Three of the most popular social media platforms across the globe are Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. All three of these services offer comparable features, including the ability to send video messages or post to Stories. In fact, these social platforms have become so similar that many users are wondering if they’re all owned by the same company. This begs the obvious question: Does Facebook own Snapchat? Or is it merely trying to capitalize on the popularity of ephemeral messaging?
Does Facebook own Snapchat?
No, Facebook does not own Snapchat. Snapchat is owned by Snap Inc., a camera company. However, Facebook does own Instagram, which offers several features similar to Snapchat, including the ability to post photos and videos to Stories.
Even though Facebook does not own Snapchat, the company has previously shown interest in buying it. In 2013, when Snapchat was only two years old, Facebook offered to buy the platform for a whopping $3 billion. Snap Inc. CEO Evan Spiegel refused the initial offer, and reportedly even refused a second buyout offer from Facebook shortly before Snapchat went public in 2017.
It’s safe to say that Snapchat and Facebook have something of a professional rivalry. After Spiegel refused to sell, the team at Facebook started implementing Snap-like features across its various platforms. Stories came to Instagram in 2016, and users were quick to point out how similar they were to Stories in Snapchat. The exact same feature came to Facebook in 2017, this time called Facebook Stories.
In a nutshell, Facebook looked at what made Snapchat so popular and applied those concepts to its own services. Stories that disappear in 24 hours, augmented reality face filters, the option to use stickers as decoration — all of these were once the primary domain of Snapchat. Now, they’re among the most popular features of both Facebook and Instagram.
Despite its efforts to buy the company, Facebook does not own Snapchat. Snap Inc. still runs and maintains the popular ephemeral messaging service. But that hasn’t stopped Facebook or Instagram from drawing in Snap’s userbase by offering practically identical photo and video messaging functionality.