One of the trademark joys that’s been part of Snapchat since it was first introduced is the way that it shares media “in the moment.” However, many users don’t want to lose access to the “Story” and video media available on the popular app, so we’re here to show you a few helpful tips that will allow you to save that media for longer periods of time.
The “instant” part of the Snapchat experience has always been at the forefront of the app’s development. Even as new features and upgrades are added on top of that base experience, the photos, videos, and Stories that make up our Snaps aren’t meant to linger; they have a brief time to be viewed–between 3 and 10 seconds for everything except Stories. This allows Snapchat media to be digested at the same pace that it’s lived: by the moment.
Users have wanted options to save Snaps for longer periods of time ever since they first started using the app. That clamor reached a fever pitch in 2014, right before a large-scale hacking event put thousands of candid photos and videos of users on the internet for everyone to see. The true culprit? Third-party apps that people were using to save and store Snaps that might otherwise have been lost to time. Regardless of how strongly I usually condemn the use of such apps–they’re not secure, and it’s not just your information that you’d be compromising–the fact remains that people want an alternative that allows them to view this media over a longer period of time.
Snapchat responded responsibly, of course. The new “Replay” feature allows users to pay-per-snap, for the ability to view them during a 24-hour window. This is a sizeable increase from the few seconds that Snaps are normally allotted, but it’s still not enough for many users. On top of that, each Snap that you want to save costs money. Given that Snapchat is an otherwise free-to-use app, it’s understandable why many would be cautious to embrace a feature that they suddenly have to pay for. Why pony-up money when the rest of the features are available, free of cost?
It’s hard for these users to know where to turn, then. Third-party apps make a lot of promises, but also don’t have the layers of security necessary to protect all of the media that you’re saving. Mobile operating systems like iOS and Android give you the ability to take screenshots, which can then be saved to your camera roll or gallery, but this doesn’t preserve some of the fun animation present in filters, the duration of videos, or the sequential narrative importance of Snapchat’s Stories.
Thankfully, we have a few solid recommendations for you. It’s a bit of diverse, roundabout way to accomplish what you’d like, and it’s only available on Android for now, but it’s a tried and true method that many people are using to preserve Snapchat media. On top of that, it doesn’t require your Snapchat account information in the way that most third-party Snapchat applications always do (which makes it inherently safer!)
Before we look into the AZ Screen Recorder app, however, let’s examine some of the pros and cons associated with recording and storing Snapchat content.
Why Can’t We Record Snapchat Media?
There’s a bit of perspective required on this issue that many users don’t think to delve into. You’ll need to put yourself in the shoes of someone other than yourself, and examine their outlook as if it were your own.
Think about this: one of Snapchat’s longstanding features has been the “self-destructing” nature of the media shared in the app. There’s no Snapchat-supported way to circumvent this; it’s simply a fact that the images, videos, and Stories shared on Snapchat aren’t meant to last long. This is the baseline understanding that every Snapchatter knows before sending any media.
In a way, we Snapchatters trust that this media won’t linger. It allows and encourages people to be more candid when they’re making Snaps, which is part of what gives Snapchat its edge in the social media marketplace. People open themselves up to their Snapchat friends in ways that they wouldn’t, elsewhere. They do this because their shared images and videos (technically) can’t come back to bite them, later on.
Enter third-party “recording” apps. Though it’s easy to see these apps as harmless, it’s very rarely your own content that you’re using these types of applications to save. In fact, that’s what made “the Snappening”–the 2014 Snapchat hacking fiasco–such a damning incident. It wasn’t the fault of the original posters of those Snaps, that their content was stolen. The fault lies solely with the hackers responsible, as well as the people who were using “recording” apps to store content that was otherwise meant to be inaccessible.
If you put yourself in the shoes of someone whose privacy was violated in such a way, it’s easy to see why the Snapchat development team doesn’t want you to record snaps. People being candid on Snapchat is good, but it certainly wouldn’t exist if every Snap that people shared was able to be ferreted away for peoples’ personal collections.
Is it Possible to Record Snapchat Media?
Yes, it is, but above and beyond all else, I urge you to be responsible about it. We still live in a world where incidents like “the Snappening” could happen again at any time, so if you’re using a third-party resource to record content from Snapchat, be very wary of how you do so, and even more, how you store it.
Where I’d like to direct Android users’ attention is towards the AZ Screen Recorder app, which gives you an appealing alternative to the plethora of purported “third-party Snapchat apps” available on mobile app stores. If you truly have to record videos and stories from Snapchat, and you’re an Android user, AZ Screen Recorder is the way to go. Here’s why:
- It doesn’t require your Snapchat information. This is not a Snapchat-exclusive app. Therefore, it’s inherently more secure. When using AZ Screen Recorder, you won’t be asked to provide unnecessary account information.
- It’s a video editor, not a social media hack. While you can certainly use this app to record Snapchat content, that’s not what it was made for. Instead, AZ Screen Recorder was made to simply give Android users the ability to record anything that’s on their screen. The content is then saved as a video file, which you can edit, cut up, or piece together, in any way that you’d like.
- There’s no monetization that you need to buy into. While you can upgrade AZ Screen Recorder to gain access to its video editing features, you don’t have to. It’s free to download and free to use for Android users.
There’s no digital app or operating system that’s going to successfully be 100% secure. Hackers will always find a way around security layers, which will result in new and improved security layers before the cycle begins anew. However, since AZ Screen Recorder is in no way tied to your Snapchat account, it’s a lot more secure than the third-party apps that people were used before.
Installing AZ Screen Recorder
Do remember that you have to be using Android OS if you want to use this app; Apple has no alternative on its app store, and until the company’s stance on recording users’ iPhone and iPad screens changes, we’re not likely to see one.
However, Android users only need to hop into the Google Play store and search for “AZ Screen Recorder.” It’s a perfectly legitimate app, and should be exceptionally easy for you to find. Installation is simple, and using the app is even easier.
Once you have it installed on your mobile device, the process becomes this:
- Open up the app and begin recording.
- Next, open the app that you’d like to record and…record!
I didn’t even have to oversimplify it to show you just how easy it is to do. The openness of Android wins the day once again, as this app can allow you to record videos, stories, and any other Snaps without losing any of the visual fidelity or animation that’s accompanying them.
However, it should be stated once more that you should be smart and be kind when using this app to record Snapchat content. Not storing it safely, or worse, sharing it without the original permission of the poster, is a fairly serious breach of trust. It’s also a violation of privacy, since no matter how you feel on the issue, the content that you’re recording was not meant to be recorded.
Be a responsible Snapchatter and keep this in mind when using the AZ Screen Recorder app.
While Apple iOS users are still left wanting, this provides a reliable resource for Android users that is inherently more secure than the third-party apps currently floating about the app marketplace. Let’s all do our part in preventing another “Snappening” and take care when we save Snaps! Always pause before you save someone’s video or story from your Snapchat feed, and consider if it’s truly worth your time and effort.