Through a new web app, Snapchat is bringing capabilities like snapping, talking, and video calling to desktop computers for the first time. This expands the company’s service beyond smartphones.

You can call pals on a PC using Snapchat for Web by logging in with your Snapchat account. The web platform is the first big feature introduction since Snap launched its paid tier in June, and at first it will only be accessible to Snapchat Plus customers. Access will be granted initially to subscribers in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Only Google’s Chrome browser will work with Snapchat; Apple’s Safari will not.

Although Snapchat was designed as a visual-first messaging software, Nathan Boyd, the head of messaging product, claims that an online version makes sense because more of its users use desktop computers. With Snap’s AR Lenses soon available, Snapchat for Web allows users more room to chat and phone in the same window. Boyd stated Snap hopes to gradually expand the number of its items available online as people use computers more frequently as a result of the pandemic and the upcoming start of the new school year.

Although Snap touts itself primarily as an AR platform for its Lenses, private, transient messaging and calling are remain the main use cases for the program. In direct rivalry with Discord and WhatsApp from Meta, which is also available on desktop, is the web version of Snapchat. Boyd claims that every month, 100 million users use Snapchat to make calls to one another, talking for an average of more than 30 minutes per day, and that people often communicate with one another before deleting the app.

Image: Snap

In an interview, he states, “We are continually searching for methods to reach our people where they are.” “It just seemed like an untapped possibility,” the author said.

The fact that the web expansion was first made available to subscribers shows how seriously the corporation is treating its premium tier as an additional revenue stream. Since leadership has warned that revenue growth is slowing, Snap is under more pressure than ever to monetize its 332 million daily active users, which is more people than Twitter. The goal is to keep devoted users coming back even though Snap’s primary source of income—ads—will initially be absent from the desktop version.