For the last few years, there has been a competition between social media sites to out-do one another. When Snapchat launched in September of 2011 it drastically disrupted the social media marketplace with new features not offered before, or not widely available. Overall this has created an inventor’s dilemma.
Facebook was launched in 2004 and Instagram was launched in 2010. They joined forces shortly after when Facebook bought the photo sharing site. Prior to the purchase, Facebook was primarily a site for connecting with friends from school or work. You could share photos and videos, but not in a real-time way like Snapchat offered. When Snapchat came on the scene Facebook and Instagram were forced to step up the features they offered.
Before long, Facebook and Instagram, two of the leading social media sites found themselves trailing in the features game.
Despite the shorter life of Snapchat, the product itself is ahead and more advanced technologically than Instagram (especially after the launch of its new 3D image lenses), and the time spent per user is still superior at Snapchat.
So in terms of an Inventor’s Dilemma, Facebook and Instagram have been working for years to perfect the features they offer. Now, they are being forced to jump into action as Snapchat takes the lead and disrupts the progress they would have made on their own.