It was the end of 2015 when Snapchat decided to shut down its ‘Snap Channel,’ an in-app destination where it offered its users original video content. The channel had only persisted for several months before being shut down, but the company isn’t ready to call it quits. New information suggests that Snapchat will be launching a new round of original scripted content by the end of this year.
Snapchat isn’t aiming to take on television, but instead to serve as a platform where additional viewers can be targeted. The information comes from Snapchat’s head of content Nick Bell, who recently spoke at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. The service is hoping to launch scripted showed by the end of 2017.
This scripted content will differ from what you’re used to, though, being only 3 to 5 minutes long per video. This short length will better hold the attention of the viewers who are typically using Snapchat, and is better designed for smartphone consumption versus traditional television.
The video content is presently being produced by other companies; Snapchat hasn’t yet taken the plunge of commissioning shows directly. The shows already offered through Snapchat have proven profitable for the company, though the degree to which wasn’t revealed. Existing content on the app has included something like a ‘Bachelor’ recap series, news segments, and short SNL videos.
Original shows may prove a bigger hurdle, though, as scripted content costs more. Whether Snapchat can find success with short scripted content is yet to be seen. The smartphone-centric short-form video entertainment industry is still in its infancy, and many people still do most of their television watching through more traditional means.