Snapchat launched its web player on Sunday night, with a debut live video story from the Academy Awards.
People visiting Snapchat.com on Sunday were served with live updates from the Oscars - in the form of a rolling Snapchat Live Story.Snapchat's reporters on the ground filmed the actors' arrivals on the red carpet, commented on their fashion choices, and shared behind-the-scenes footage from the show itself - complete with bespoke Snapchat Oscars filters.
It's likely more Stories around big live events will follow. The web player launch is a major move from Snapchat to make content on the app more shareable.
Until now, the only way to share a Snap (or a Snap from a Live Story) on desktop would be to manually screen-shot the app or download the image. A web URL makes it far easier to share a Story or a Snap on social, increasing the likelihood for that content to go viral.It's not yet clear whether the web player will later be made available for all users, or whether it will be exclusive to Snapchat-curated Live Stories.
Either way, the web player launch will be welcomed by advertisers, who will see it as a way to increase the reach of their Snapchat campaigns. There's no word yet on the types of web player formats available, but it will be logical to assume that Snapchat's "Our Story" sponsorships would migrate over to desktop.