Snap rolled out a Do Not Disturb feature weeks ago and didn't tell you about it

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The Snapchat app logo is seen on a smartphone in this picture illustration taken September 15, 2017. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/IllustrationThe Snapchat app logo is seen on a smartphone in this illustrationThomson Reuters

  • Snapchat has a new Do Not Disturb option, which lets you stop notifications from specific people or groups without telling them that you've muted them.
  • Ironically, Snapchat didn't tell users when it rolled the feature out.
  • The update could help prevent users from having to check their phone regularly, amid conversations about child smartphone addiction.

Snap rolled out a Do Not Disturb feature that allows Snapchat users to silence notifications from specific people and groups, keeping the muted parties in the dark. Snapchat users must know the feeling, since the update itself was released a few weeks ago without any word from the company, as reported by TechCrunch's Josh Constine.

Facebook Messenger and iMessage offer similar tools, inspired by those overly communicative friends who make you regret agreeing to push notifications. An incessantly buzzing phone makes it difficult to get anything done, but turning off all push notifications isn't always good either, so this kind of Do Not Disturb option works well as an in-between step. This tool may also encourage Snapchat users to check the app more often, especially if you don't know how many direct messages you really have.

Even though Snap wasn't vocal about its release, Snapchat's new Do Not Disturb comes at a time when more people in the tech industry are talking about smartphone addiction. Facebook promised to address these concerns with updates to its platform, but it hasn't announced anything yet. Snap's new feature might not have been a direct response to these concerns, but it'll be interesting to see if and how it impacts the way people use Snapchat.

It sounds like Snap is doing pretty well against its competitors based on the company's Q4 earnings report on Tuesday, which blew past Wall Street expectations and made Snap's stock take off. Since its last earnings call, Snap rolled out updates to its social media platform that it hopes will help it keep up with competition from Facebook's Instagram. Snap announced a design overhaul in November, and just announced it would be pushing out new font options, rainbow swashes, and a neon glow font, a week after Instagram released the highly anticipated "Type Mode," which gave users new fonts to play around with.

Get the latest Snap stock price here.

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