23 July 2018
Snapchat is appearing to get ready for allowing third-party apps and developers to have access to user data. It is based on the report from Mashable which spotted the Connected Apps feature in the latest Snapchat beta version. This feature has been added in the recent update as it was not listed in any of the older versions.
This new Connected Apps feature does not do anything at the moment. Tapping on the option takes to a new page which has nothing but the text, "These apps are connected to your Snapchat account. Choose an app to control what it has access to." You can have a look at it in the screenshot below.
The text gives a suggestion that Snapchat is likely to offer an API which will allow third-party apps to get access to user data. It goes without saying that its Snapchat users who would have to allow connecting their accounts with any particular third-party app. The newly spotted setting will then make it possible for users to see which apps are connected to their account and if they wish, they will be able to manage or completely disconnect from such apps.
As of now, Snapchat currently allows only Bitmoji to be connected with users accounts which is simply because it owns the custom emoji maker service. Additionally, it has a deal with Shazam through which users able to share their shazams with friends like snaps.
While it is indeed interesting to see Snapchat exploring the idea of expanding data sharing with more apps and developers, it is even more interesting to see the timing of the move. The feature has been spotted at a time when Facebook is already in a huge mess because of the improper data handling which allowed Cambridge Analytica to misuse the data.
It should be noted that the Connected Apps feature has only been spotted in beta which means it is still possible that Snapchat might not release it. But if it does, it will be interesting to see what safety measures it would announce to avoid a Facebook-like situation.