Snap said Tuesday that a new version of the Snapchat Android app is in the works and will be designed from scratch, presumably in an effort to provide a significant portion of its user base with a more consistent experience than what's currently available on devices running Google's mobile operating system. The announcement came as part of Snap's consolidated financial report for the third quarter of the year which managed to disappoint already skeptical investors, having missed most analyst-made estimates even amid low expectations. Snap also announced a major redesign of its social media service that was presented in a manner suggesting it's independent of its upcoming Android app, being meant to also encompass iOS and make Snapchat more intuitive to use, hence appealing to a wider audience and possibly revitalizing the company's slowing growth.
Snap's user base was 178 million strong as of the end of Q3 2017, marking a modest growth of only five million users over the three-month period ending September 30th, three percentage points higher compared to the Q2 2017 figure and 17 percent up year-on-year. With Instagram Stories boasting more than 300 million users and Instagram itself having over 800 million people on its network, advertisers remain skeptical about Snap's ability to provide them with the most efficient method of reaching a large, highly targeted audience, though Snap is adamant that its user base is more valuable than what its competitors are offering. The social media firm posted a net loss of $443.2 million or 14 cents per share over the third quarter due to a variety of factors, including its still-unsuccessful hardware experiment.
Snap also labeled Spectacles as a flop as part of its latest financials, revealing a $40 million write-down on unsold units of its camera-equipped glasses. The company's co-founder and CEO Even Spiegel described the development as a learning experience, though it remains to be seen how much informative failures will investors tolerate, especially as Snap continues posting underwhelming results across the board. Even the apparently largest positive takeaway from the company's financials fell below expectations, with Snap posting a revenue of $207.9 million in Q3 2017, approximately $30 million under previous estimates. Despite a 60 percent annual growth in turnover, the stagnating user base makes Snap a less lucrative proposition for marketers compared to Instagram, with the upcoming redesign being aimed at addressing that issue. No firm availability windows for the new Snapchat Android app or its mobile overhaul have been provided by the Venice, Los Angeles-based startup.