Snapchat’s newest update now lets you capture video while also playing music on your phone, according to TechCrunch. This allows users to add their own soundtrack to their snaps, a feature that was made popular by another startup, Mindie, before Snapchat shut it down (Snapchat currently doesn’t allow any apps to access its API.).
The ability to add music has been a much-requested feature by Snapchat users for some time now. Before the new update, playing music from an outside app like Spotify or iTunes has caused Snapchat to pause during video capture, which meant the only way to add music was from outside audio sources like speakers (which is often distorted).
Starting today, however, you’ll be able to queue up your favourite song and hop into Snapchat without any issues. The method does require some sense of timing, though, as Snapchat will record whatever is currently playing on your phone when you tap the record button.
Unfortunately, there’s no way to select a song or edit the timing of the music from within the app, which was part of what made the music video creation app Mindie so appealing.
With Mindie, you can record a 10-second video and then later select a song from its library, and it even lets you adjust which 10-second interval of the song you’d like to include.
Mindie used to allow its users to export their 10-second music videos to Snapchat, posting the final product as a Snapchat Story. Snapchat has a closed API, though, meaning it doesn’t allow third-party apps to tap into the app, so Snapchat quickly shut down Mindie’s Snapchat integration. When Mindie found a workaround, Snapchat again shut off access.
Snapchat’s public response was that it was worried about the security of its users, as Snapchat has faced issues in the past with third-party apps being hacked to reveal users’ photos. In October, third-party app Snapsaved was hacked in what has been called “The Snappening,” which led to thousands of images being leaked online. That being said, the timing of Snapchat shutting off access from Mindie is still suspect, and you could make the argument that Snapchat saw Mindie’s success and simply decided to introduce a similar feature on its own.
“Obviously Snapchat has been afraid of us,”
“Obviously Snapchat has been afraid of us.”
Mindie founder Gregoire Henrion told Business Insider. “We grew to over 100,000 new users organically in just a few days when the Snapchat sharing feature was integrated. That’s the main reason they shut us down.”
Henrion also says that Snapchat has been playing favourites with which third-party apps it will allow to access Snapchat. “Our app was very secure, so the ‘security’ reason is not understandable,” he said. “They continue to allow some other third-party apps to post on Snapchat like SnapSave. But we are committed to shipping the best video experience on the mobile market, and we will continue to do so. For them, music and video is a feature, for us, it’s a vision.”
Music will be a big part of Snapchat’s mission moving forward, however. The company is rumoured to be eyeing a record label acquisition, for example. CEO Evan Spiegel wants to use a record label to promote artists on his app, and benefit from artists promoting their Snapchat work on other social media outlets.
Either way, Snapchat users will be happy to know that they can now create 10-second music videos and add another creative tool to their arsenal which will allow them to better compete with other video sharing apps like Vine.
In order to record music with your snaps, you’ll need to have the latest version of Snapchat, version 9.2.0, installed on your phone. After that, just open up your preferred music app, start up a song, open up Snapchat, and start recording.