Houseparty now lets you chat without notifying all your friends

Houseparty is a new group video chat app that was built by the founders of ex-livestreaming app Meerkat.

The app provides a space to video chat with friends – once you open the app you can just pop in other friends group video chats, or wait for friends to join yours.

But currently the app notifies all of your friends (who are Houseparty users) with a push notification each time you open the app. While it does serve some benefit by letting your friends know when you are in the app and ready to chat (and vice versa), many saw it as an annoyance. And until recently there was no alternative – if you didn’t want to send a mass notification to all your friends the only option was to literally not open the app.

But now the startup has quietly rolled out a feature called “Sneak into the House” which lets you open the app without sending that pesky notification to your friends. It’s activated by Apple’s 3D Touch feature – so when you force touch the app icon it pops up as an option.

This type of special option is exactly what 3D Touch was meant for. And while you may argue that Houseparty should have just made this no notification mode the default feature, some people don’t mind it as much – and it’s probably great for engagement. So this is a nice compromise – it provides a secondary option for people who want a bit more discretion without sacrificing the notifications that the app is known for.

You can also “Sneak into the House” by tapping an incoming push notification from the app – like the kind you get when one of your friends joins. This is a nice bonus for users who have older iPhones without 3D Touch support.

FYI, if you’re trying to use the feature with 3D Touch and it isn’t appearing (even after you updated the app), you may have to open the app once regularly to activate it. After that, the special option should show up.