Snapchat is back up, but the app might have lost its key advantage

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For several hours on October 13, popular self-destructing-image-sending app Snapchat went down. Many users  found themselves unable to connect in the first place, and many others weren't able to send messages once they were in.

According to Snapchat's support page on Twitter (opens in new tab), the issue has been resolved now, and DownDetector concurs with the number of reported issues having dramatically dropped off.

In total the service was down for several hours before Snapchat announced it was available to use again, though some Snappers found themselves able to use the app before the company's official announcement.

There was no official comment from the company on why this outage occurred.

Commenters on Snapchat's Tweet report being unable to log in, so it's possible that service will return slowly. However for some people, it might be too little too late for the legacy app.

Analysis: enjoy it while it lasted

Just a week ago Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram all went down, which is noteworthy given the latter is a big rival for Snapchat, due to it being another image-based social media platform. 

According to Bloomberg (opens in new tab), Snapchat saw a huge boost in popularity after that outage - the site predicts that there was a 20% uptick in users, as many flocked to the snap-happy alternative.

Well, we don't imagine that boost will last long now that Snapchat has fallen apart. Instagram is still going strong, so users might choose to switch back to the Facebook-owned photo app.

Snapchat's stock started tumbling due to the outage - when trading opened in the US mid-way through the outage, Snapchat's share price was in freefall. At the time of writing, several minutes after the company announced service was back to normal, shares were down 0.52%. 

That's a big drop compared to the company's slow upward trend, though it's not a huge drop in the grand scheme of the company's performance.

There have been plenty of outages in 2021, as all the big websites seem to keep falling apart, and Snapchat is just the latest in a long line. You can read our guide on why this keeps happening if you're interested - and this is likely far from the last such outage we'll see.

Tom Bedford
Deputy Editor - Phones

Tom's role in the TechRadar team is to specialize in phones and tablets, but he also takes on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness, mobile gaming and more. He is based in London, UK.

He graduated in American Literature and Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Prior to working in TechRadar freelanced in tech, gaming and entertainment, and also spent many years working as a mixologist. Outside of TechRadar he works in film as a screenwriter, director and producer.