Snapchat adds disappearing text and video chat

The popular image messaging app has added text and video chat, with messages that will also disappear

Snapchat has introduced instant messaging and video calls, the latest social network to give users more options for private conversations. As with the image messaging that made the app popular, chats won’t be stored on users’ phones.

Users can chat with friends by swiping right on their names in the inbox. When the chat screen is closed, the messages and pictures are deleted, though users can choose to manually save them to their phones.

If both users are in a chat, the app will offer the opportunity to share live video and chat face to face, the company said in a blog post. The new features will come in an update to the existing app, which has not yet arrived in the app store.

Facebook Messenger, the company’s chat app, made it easier to add selfies and video to conversations earlier this week. Snapchat rejected a $3bn offer for Facebook late last year.

Vine also added the option to send direct messages recently, and Twitter is pursuing the possibility of secret conversations.