Facebook Inc trails Snapchat in providing users with more enjoyable interactions. This, according to new research by the University of Michigan.
The study evaluated how 154 college students utilized their smart phones. And found that, next to direct interactions with people, the most gratifying dialogue happened on Snapchat.
Snapchat is more than a sexting app
Most “people view Snapchat as the ‘sexting app,'” Joseph Bayer, the lead author, said in a statement. “But instead, we found that Snapchat is typically being used to communicate spontaneously with close friends in a new and often more enjoyable way.”
The study claims to be the first of its kind in detailing how users felt about using social media.
Snapchat was linked to more positive emotions than Facebook. Bayer said the primary reason for users not preferring Facebook Inc was the “self-presentational” aspect of the social network.
Facebook has turned into a platform for sharing big moments such as graduations and birthdays. Snapchat seems to have filled the gap for a distinct space for the smaller life events, Bayer noted.
Facebook may add to depression
Facebook Inc is by far the biggest social network. Its 1.5B monthly active users consider it the most effective tool for connecting with the world.
However, a large number of users find they spend quite a lot of time viewing Facebook. This often leads to comparing what’s happening in one’s life to the achievements of family and friends.
Earlier this year, research conducted by the University of Houston showed that the amount of time people spent on Facebook Inc could point to depression.
Lead author Mai-Ly Steers wrote, “social comparison processes have been examined at length in traditional contexts. But the literature is only beginning to explore social comparisons in online social networking settings.”
She was however quick to add that it doesn’t mean Facebook led to depression. But that “depressed feelings and lots of time on Facebook and comparing oneself to others tend to go hand in hand.”
Snapchat is gaining traction
Snapchat is growing in popularity. CEO Evan Spiegel says there are now close to 100M daily active users. And 65% of those upload photos.
There are two major differences between Facebook Inc and Snap chat.
Snap chat stories disappear every 24 hours. That way, its almost live. Plus, it ensures the negative mental affects of Facebook are absent.
The second key feature is that Snap chat stories are not visible without user focus. The user has to hold the finger on the screen for the story to play. If its removed, the video stops playing. The user is 100% engaged, making it the ideal ad platform.
Shares of Facebook Inc closed Monday at $103.77.