SOCIAL MEDIA has become a multi-billion dollar industry that strives on the basis of perfection.
While many attempt to present the perfect life online, the BeReal app is challenging the status quo and trying to change the way social media is used.
BeReal is a new social media siteCredit: BeReal
What is the BeReal app?
The BeReal app was founded in January 2020 and has since attracted Gen Z’s attention.
It is a new social media site that tells you when to post, but that catch is that you have to post whatever you’re doing at that time, without editing.
“BeReal is the simplest photo sharing app to share once a day your real life in photo with friends,” the app’s description reads.
“Everyday at a different time, everyone captures a photo within 2 minutes. Capture and post in time to discover what your Friends are up to.”
Not only do you take a picture with your back-facing camera, but the app also takes a picture at the same time with your front-facing camera to show not only what you’re doing but also what the real you looks like.
What have people said about the app?
Since its launch in 2020, BeReal has seen a 315% year-to-date increase in downloads, with at least 65% of lifetime downloads happening in the first quarter of 2022 alone, according to NPR.
One of the reasons that the app gained such popularity is because of its unique design and content.
“You can see a whole other side to people that isn’t just their presentable side to social media,” Dundee student Errin Mathieson, 21, said, via NBC News.
“It gets really tiring and exhausting for people constantly like scrolling through Instagram and seeing people having these perfect lives.”
Tegan Sullivan, 23, also had positive things to say.
“When I first joined in January, there was like no one on it. It was me and like me and the friend who got me into it,” she said. “Now I think I have like 30 friends on it.
“It’s just so much more casual in terms of just like, I almost feel like there’s not an expectation that you’re doing something fun.”
While the app continues to grow around the world, social media analyst Matt Navarra told NBC News that the popularity might not last.
“I’d be surprised if it’s around in a year’s time,” he said. “Much like the viral apps before it, they could fail for a number of different reasons.”
Navarra then went on to explain that the app might see a decline in usage because it won’t be interesting after a while.
“After a while, you’re kind of seeing the same people at work at their desk or lying in the park and walking to the pier — that doesn’t last very long, that doesn’t keep you hooked in,” he explained.
“It needs to bring on more people. It needs to give people more functionality and features in there. It needs to create an environment that’s going to give space for advertisers to do what they need to do.
“You’ve shown us a trick, now what else have you got for us?”
BeReal was launched in January 2020Credit: BeReal
Who founded the BeReal app?
In January 2020, the app was founded by French entrepreneur Alexis Barreyat.
Before BeReal, Barreyat worked at GoPro and was a Video Producer at Worm, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Outside of his occupations, little information is available on Barreyat as he tends to stay out of the spotlight.
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