Snapchat, the app that lets you send pics and videos that self-destruct, has just released a huge update to version 5.0 “Banquo” (I’ll get to that in a minute), which includes a dramatic revamp of the app’s UI.
The update also brings with it a few new features, like the ability to double-tap to reply, in-app profiles, and better tools for adding friends.
The UI is finally worthy of its growing user base, with swipe navigation leading you from the camera, your inbox, your friends, and a way to add new friends or search for users. The inbox is oddly unchanged, though the camera panel is much more beautiful, doing away with all the blue bubblies and going for something a bit more transparent.
In terms of navigating around the app, the swipe panels make perfect sense and take far fewer clicks.
Double-tap to reply lets you simply double-tap on a message in your inbox to head back to the camera — once you take your selfie, the picture will automatically be sent to the original sender (right after Snapchat gives you a little pop-up so you’re absolutely, positively sure that you are of sound mind and body).
In-app profiles are more subtle than you’d expect, but just as barebones as their web counterparts. Simply tap on a name in your Friends panel, and a drop-down menu will display that user’s best friends and their score.
The app has also undergone a huge revamp in the Find Friends panel, with cute animations leading you into the contacts section.
Now, about “Banquo”. Banquo is a character from Shakespeare’s Macbeth who begins as an ally to Macbeth, and is with him when the three witches give their prophecy: that Macbeth will be king, but that Banquo’s son would also be king, presumably after Macbeth.
When Macbeth ascends to the throne, Banquo wonders if Macbeth was involved in the murder of his predecessor, King Duncan. Macbeth becomes paranoid and suspicious of Banquo, and ultimately orders that he and his son Fleance be murdered. The climactic scene of the whole play comes when Banquo’s ghost haunts Macbeth during the feast.
Get it? Ghost? Snapchat? Ghost?
You get it.
In the end, Banquo has a long line of descendants that take the throne in a final apparition.
But it could go much further than that. Banquo is often seen as the good to Macbeth’s evil. He wins where Macbeth loses (in longevity). So who can we consider Snapchat’s foils? Facebook? Instagram? Reggie Brown?
Your guess is as good as mine.
The update is available now in the App Store.