Snapchat announced on Thursday that it was discontinuing a braking feature that allowed users of the social network to share how fast they were moving.
The feature, known as a “speed filter”, allows Snapchat users to capture their speed in images that they can then shoot to friends, raising concerns and complaints about potential harmful distractions.
Controversy over the feature has led Snapchat to turn it from a “filter” that zooms in on images at high speed to stickers that can be added to messages.
“Nothing is more important than the safety of our Snapchat community, and we have previously disabled filters on driving speeds,” a spokesperson for Snap’s parent company said at AFP’s request.
“Today the sticker is barely used by Snap chatters, so we removed it completely.”
Snap’s parent company has long retained the features it introduced in 2013.
Amid criticism and concerns that the feature tricked Snapchat users into driving fast to show off. Snap limited the top speed to 35 mph, according to an NPR report.
Snapchat, a popular social network among young smartphone users, announced in May that it has 500 million monthly active users as it grows in many parts of the world.
Snapchat which has enlarged its offering beyond the actual disappearing news. Previously did not reveal the number of monthly active users. But announced last month that it has 280 million daily active users.
Much of Snapchat’s appeal stems from its “camera” feature. This allows users to add augmented reality to their own content and use technology for interactions, including shopping.
But Snap, despite strong growth, is struggling to become profitable. In the first quarter, revenue rose 66 percent year-on-year to $770 million on a net loss of $286 million.
It’s also worth noting that when it comes to Snapchat, distracted driving has no age limit. Chevrolet was the first to notice this problem and launched the Call Me Out app.
Basically, the app starts playing personalized messages from family members. The accelerometer detects a car moving at over five miles per hour.
Volvo’s next-generation cars like the XC40 Recharge and XC50 are likely to take a step forward. If your Volvo notices you’re not paying attention, it will back off to the side of the road.
However, we can’t help but wonder what the speed filter is for. If you surf YouTube long enough, you’ll eventually find a harmless answer. Among all the horrific crash footage, at some point you’ll find people posting the plane’s takeoff speed or the train’s top speed.
Following a recent court ruling, Snapchat removed the filter. Snapchat did not specifically cite the case. Instead choosing to cite low usage figures as a reason for removing it altogether.