Few apps are updated quite as dramatically as Snapchat. The app’s last major update happened in 2017, and while this oft-maligned redesign famously lost the platform millions of users, Snapchat’s minor updates tend to be less controversial.
Unfortunately, they can also be harder to understand at first glance.
Whether you’re new to the app, or just double-checking updates, we’ve rounded up a list of new Snapchat features you need to know about.
How Do You Get the Latest Update for Snapchat?
So long as you’ve updated the app to the latest release version, you should see some bug fixes and improvements for various Snapchat features. If you want to check and see if you’re still “up to date,” there are a few ways to do it.
To update the Snapchat app on iPhone:
- Open up the Apple App Store.
- Tap on the user icon in the top right-hand corner.
- Scroll down to the apps that have available updates for them. If you don’t see Snapchat in this section, it means that there are no new updates available.
- If you do see the app, simply tap on the sign that says Update next to the app’s icon.
To update the Snapchat app on Android:
- Open up the Google Play Store.
- Choose My apps & games from the menu list.
- In the Updates tab, see if you can find Snapchat. Just like on iOS, if you can’t find Snapchat, it means that the app is currently up to code.
- If you do see Snapchat, you can update it.
Curious about the new Snapchat features that have been added to the app? Here they are, listed in chronological order.
Snapchat’s “Here for You” Feature
At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Snapchat rolled out its “Here for You” feature. This is a comprehensive service that lists local resources for Snapchat users, with subjects ranging from mental health assistance to bullying awareness.
To access Here for You:
- Open the Snapchat app.
- Go to the Discover page.
- In the search bar, type in “here for you.”
- By typing this, Snapchat will pull up a list of resources that can help you.
Alongside these regular, everyday resources, this Snapchat update included a specific section for COVID-19 preparation. There are new filters and bitmojis to help raise awareness pf the pandemic, too.
“Here for You” is probably the most helpful update that Snapchat has introduced for some time.
Snapchat Bitmoji TV
In early 2020, Snapchat introduced a new feature called Bitmoji TV. By going to the Discover page on Snapchat and searching “bitmoji TV,” you can find an animated series starring you and your friends.
The first season aired weekly, and was actually pretty fun to watch. The only other thing to note? If none of your friends have bitmojis, then “you may co-star in your episode with a friendly alien.”
In late 2019, Snapchat introduced the Snapchat Cameos feature. It’s a really cool addition that basically allows you to take a selfie, cut your face out of that selfie, then attach your face to a short, funny video that you can send to a friend. Hence the “cameo” name.
To make a Snapchat Cameo:
- Open the Chat feature.
- Click on the “smiley” face in the chat bar, then tap on the gray face at the bottom of the screen. When you do, the icon at the bottom of your screen should turn blue, and will look like this:
After you tap on the Cameo you want to use, you’ll be take to the Cameos selfie screen, where you can press Create My Cameo to make one. You’ll then be guided through the creation process.
After you’re done with the process, choose a Snapchat Cameo to use in a video that you can send to your friends.
Other cool things that you should know:
- To save a Cameo, press and hold on it. Then tap Export.
- Other people can use your Cameo selfies. If you want to enable or disable this setting, tap on the “gear” icon on your profile page, then scroll down to Settings > Who Can… > Use my Cameos Selfie.
- Regardless of which settings you have in place, no Snapchat user that you’ve blocked can use or access your Cameos selfies.
Overall, this is a really cool new Snapchat feature.
Snaps With 3D
In late 2019, Snapchat introduced the Snaps With 3D feature.
This feature allows you to send 3D selfies to your friends and followers. While you can only take a 3D snap if you use an iPhone X or higher, all Snapchat users can receive a 3D snap with ease.
Our verdict? It’s a great feature, and we love using it.
To use Snaps With 3D:
- Open up your camera in Snapchat.
- Press the downwards facing arrow on the camera screen to expand your in-camera “settings” list.
- Choose 3D from that list.
Basically, this feature is one of the many benefits that come from having (and using) an iPhone.
Leaderboards in Snapchat Games
Additional updates to Snapchat features include the introduction of Leaderboards in Snapchat Games.
This feature allows you to display your score and rank on a particular game, and compare that rank to your friends’. Basically, the leaderboard is a way to start off a bit of casual competition with others.
Some things to note about this feature:
- Some leaderboards only show how you rank amongst your immediate friends, while others show you how you rank globally among Snapchatters. Other games have no leaderboards at all.
- To be added to a leaderboard, you have to tap “Send my score” at the bottom of the screen once you’re done playing the game.
- You can also hide this score from your friends or the general public, if you choose to do so.
Also tied into the Leaderboards update: Snapchat introduced Bitmoji Tennis, which is one of several games that Snapchat allows you to play within the app itself.
Bitmoji Tennis can be played solo or with a friend. To play it with a friend:
- Open a group chat.
- Tap on the “Rocket Ship” icon to launch the Games section.
Additional games on Snapchat that you may want to try out:
All of these games are interesting to play, and there are plenty more on Snapchat’s list of games.
Other New Snapchat Features?
Snapchat has also improved its Snapchat Insights for Creator accounts. However, because Creator profiles are not available to all users, we won’t be covering that update here.
Additionally, there have been rumors of Snapchat testing a “big new redesign” according to The Verge. After the 2017 rollout was met with consternation, however, Snapchat appears to have developed a more cautious approach to its overall app iterations.
So until those rumored updates make an official appearance, we can’t comment on them.
Check Out the Newest Snapchat Features
Snapchat is a social media platform that has been around for a while. Despite its age and the surging popularity of its competitors, however, this platform still has a lot to offer in the way of new features. And if you want the newest Snapchat features as soon as they’re released, you need to keep the Snapchat app updated.
Despite these new features, Snapchat is still best known for its filters and lenses. So here’s how to get more Snapchat filters and lenses
. And if none of them appeal, here’s how to make a Snapchat geofilter on a budget
Image Credit: George Dolgikh/Shutterstock
Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.