Snapchat is Developing an Internal App Store for Games

A lot of people use Snapchat every single day, but there is plenty of competition — especially from Instagram.

So, Snap, Inc. has to work to keep people on its platform. One of the ideas the company is working with, one of many one would imagine, has just been outlined in a new report from The Outline. According to the publication, Snap is developing an “internal app store” specifically for games on the platform.

“The company is preparing to launch a platform this fall that will let outside developers create games to be played through the Snapchat app, according to two people familiar with the matter.

It is relying on outside developers to build the games that could be downloaded in an internal app-store of titles. The gaming platform has been in the works for at least a year as the company has worked on the platform’s technology, according to a person familiar with the effort.”

The idea is for Snap to facilitate the launch of mobile games that can be played within Snapchat itself, where third-party developers will let Snap distribute the games directly. The report indicates that Snap has already secured at least one major gaming publisher to build a title for Snapchat, but specific details in that regard remain unknown.

The app store itself is penciled in for a launch sometime this fall, but that date could change. What’s more, the planning has not nailed down how to charge Snapchat users for the games themselves. On iOS, Snap isn’t allowed to sell games (or other apps) through Snapchat unless those are designated in-app purchases. (Valve ran into this issue with its Steam Link app not too long ago.)

This is not the first time that Snap has toyed with the idea of games on its Snapchat platform. Earlier this year, for instance, it launched what it calls “Snappables”, which were titles that included augmented reality efforts built exclusively for Snapchat. It sounds like this new effort is a bit more serious in scope, with Snap trying to get major publishers to release titles for Snapchat.

Our Take

This is a good idea, as long as the games are actually worthwhile titles. There are plenty of mobile games out there that are just bait to sink more money and less time into them, and hopefully Snap isn’t going that route for its Snapchat titles. There is a real possibility that if playing games takes off in Snapchat, it could help it get some distance from Instagram.

Until Instagram follows suit, of course.

[via The Information]