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Facebook recently released a new standalone app called Poke, that users say is merely a clone of the popular app Snapchat.
No. 4 among free apps available on iTunes, Snapchat is an application that allows users to send pictures and videos to their friends. Each picture and/or video can be accompanied by a 33-character long message. Users are able to communicate through the app with any friends or family members that have also downloaded the application. This allows for a wider outreach than that obtained by the Facebook Poke app, which requires a Facebook log-in to function and only allows users to send to other Facebook users.
While Poke allows you to send a 120-character long message- a significant difference when compared to the miniscule 33-characters allotted by Snapchat -it has still only reached no. 70 among the free apps available on iTunes and has, inadvertently, made Snapchat even more popular than it originally was. In regard to Android operating systems and according to PCWorld, Snapchat is no. 31 on Google Play’s most popular free apps, whereas Poke isn’t available for Android systems at all.
According to Topsy analytics, with the release of Poke, Snapchat mentions and usage have skyrocketed, hitting the ever-coveted “hockey stick” phase that investors and start up companies dream about, as mentioned by TechCrunch.com.
It is to be noted, however, that while Facebook is constantly being berated for it’s less than user-friendly privacy settings, its Poke app took a well-received page from Snapchat’s book and also utilizes the feature of message self-destruction- after a user-specified amount of time, messages disappear. Also available on both apps is the instant alert should a recipient screenshot any message sent to them.