Social media platforms are adding new features all the time, and no-one wants to be the last to a trend.

As we’re approaching August, we thought we’d round up some of the exciting new features still to come to our fave social media platforms in 2020…

Snapchat MinisSnapchat Minis - snap minis - social media features in 2020

Last month, Snapchat announced that they would be releasing a series of bite-sized third-party apps inside the app called ‘Minis’.

Four of the Minis are launching this week, including one developed by meditation app Headspace that allows users to access six short meditation sessions. Other Minis coming to the app soon include a study-aid flashcard tool and something to help groups with decision-making…

Instagram Shop

Instagram Shop - Explore Shopping - social media features in 2020
Instagram announced last week that they were launching Instagram Shop globally, so if you click on the Explore tab, you might already have this feature.

The ‘Shop’ tab showcases personalised product recommendations for you, based on the accounts that you follow. The idea behind this feature is that it will not only make in-app purchases more seamless for customers, but it will also help business accounts to reach relevant audiences with their product posts.

Later in the year, the new Shop tab will feature permanently in the navigation bar and users will be able to buy products using Facebook Pay.

Messenger Rooms screen-sharing

Messenger rooms - screen sharing - social media features in 2020
Near the beginning of the lockdown, Facebook released Messenger Rooms – a video-calling feature that allows you to start a video chat with up to 50 people and no fixed time limit.

Taking on video-conferencing giants like Google Hangouts, Zoom and Skype once again, Facebook are bringing out a new screen-sharing feature for their Messenger app. For the first time on the mobile app, users will be able to share a live view of their screen for other chat participants to see. When in a Messenger Room, the creator will be able to specify which of the participants have permission to screen share with the group.

Instagram Reels

Instagram Reels - Stories - social media features in 2020
In November 2019, Instagram began testing a new feature for Stories called ‘Reels’. In a very similar way to TikTok, Reels allows users to adjust the speed of their videos and add timed captions, as well as being able to overlay audio from other people’s videos.

Reels has already been tested in Brazil, France, Germany and India. A spokesperson for Facebook told TechCrunch that it would be coming to “more countries, including the U.S., in early August”. We’re not sure if that means the UK or not, but we imagine that we won’t have to wait too much longer!

YouTube branded experiences and display ads

YouTube - shopping AR - swirl ads - beauty try on - social media features in 2020
YouTube has reportedly been testing some new immersive shopping features in a bid to ‘close the gap between the user, the screen, and the product they’re seeing.’

These include interactive Swirl ads – where users can interact with a 3D preview of the product on-screen – and AR Beauty Try-On, where viewers can virtually try on make-up products whilst watching videos from their favourite YouTube beauty gurus.

These new features may not be available to smaller brands until 2021 at the earliest, but we’re excited to see bigger brands like Adidas, Guerlain and MAC already starting to use them to promote their products.

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