Facebook Takes Aim At Snapchat With Slingshot Video Chat App
by Paul Lilly
Apparently fed up with being rejected by Snapchat, Facebook for the past several months has reportedly been working on a video sharing and chatting application of its own. It's called Slingshot, and like Snapchat, it allows users to send short video messages to recipients with just a few taps. However, it's not yet clear if Facebook will release the app.
Citing "people familiar with its plans", Financial Times says Slingshot boasts a simple and responsive user interface, and if launched, it would stand on its own two feet separate from Facebook Messenger -- this would fall in line with Mark Zuckerberg's plan to de-bundle the social playground's mobile services.
However, those same sources indicate that Facebook might choose not to launch Slingshot. They didn't mention why, though it's worth remembering that Facebook tried to take on Snapchat once before -- with Poke. While similar in function to Snapchat, Poke was nowhere near as popular, which ultimately led to Facebook removing it from the App Store earlier this month.
Facebook has tried on multiple occasions to acquire Snapchat, first with a $1 billion bid that was rejected, and then with a much more lucrative $3 billion offer, which was also turned down. It's not known how much Snapchat's founders and investors would accept for the application, but if Facebook proceeds with Slingshot and it fails like Poke did, that could drive the value of Snapchat up even further.