Google is making some advancements and what they are might surprise you. Google is going to attempt to take on Snapchat, but not the way you think. Snapchat’s Discover section is a popular destination for 166 million users, and now Google wants to do something similar, but with news and entertainment content. Since it’s Google, it is going to use its credibility (and cash) to attract media outlets. The service will be known as “Stamp”. Like with Discovery, users will be able to swipe through a slideshow style format of text, photos, and videos.
Sounds pretty neat, doesn’t it? Well, neat, but oddly similar to other platforms. Let’s talk about how Google is going to do this. They are apparently using the payouts to cushion the costs publishers encounter as they produce articles specifically for the new product. No details are available around how much Google is giving out just yet. Included in the list of publishers are Conde Nast, Hearst, Time Inc., Mashable, Mic.com, CNN, The Washington Post and Vox Media. And publishers will also benefit from the exposure that comes with top billing on Google’s search results. Which is where it will be placed.
Of course, ads will still play a role. If Stamp is anything like Instagram Stories, then the ads will likely pop up in between slides. Google is not planning on selling ads at the present. Instead, it’s partners will be able to work with marketers directly to line their pockets in an attempt to disrupt your viewing pleasure.
Publishers who are working on Stamp describe it as multimedia slide format, optimized for phones, that’s supposed to surface at the top of Google’s search results but would also live on their own sites. It can accommodate video, images, and text, and users can advance through slides by swiping or tapping through. Stamp is supposed to be built on the open-source, fast-loading “AMP” mobile format Google rolled out a couple years ago. But publishers say they have needed to assign staff to create new content for the format, and also to create their own publishing systems to upload the content to Google.
I’m honestly unsure how I feel about this. I’ve written a few posts recently about crossover on platforms. What bothers me is how each platform develops something “new”, when it is usually just a knock-off of another platform. Or a derivative of. If you’ve read any of my posts before, you will know that I love competition. I think it keeps companies from getting too large and overtaking an industry. It also benefits the consumers. What Google is doing is slightly different than Instagram and Snapchat. But is it different enough for people to want to use the platform?
It seems very similar to Snapchat’s Discover, which lets you get the news that you want and when you want it. But I’m not sure that it’s different enough to give people another option. The Discover feature in Snapchat is beneficial for the user because they’re already using the platform. It’s a bonus. Now, people will have to download another app, in order to get their news and I don’t think that’s right. I know I am not usually a supporter for one-stop shopping, but I just feel like another app is something that I don’t necessarily want to deal with. As always, that’s just my opinion. Which I may update or change once the app is released.