BeReal was Apple's iPhone app of the year for 2022, but buzz around the social media app (that forces you to post daily selfies) has died down of late. Now, the French company has introduced "RealChat" private messaging, allowing it to boast a feature found on most major social media apps, TechCrunch has reported.
The function is one of the most requested, the company said. You can only message another user if you're friends with them on the platform. For a message to be deleted, both parties have to do so — deleting your own message won't delete it from a friend's app. The chat system will reportedly feature blocking and reporting features.
BeReal has an interesting and somewhat messy approach to social media. It sends notifications at a different time each day, prompting you to quickly share photos taken with your phone's front and rear cameras simultaneously. You have a two-minute window to do so, forcing you to share spontaneous moments without spending extra time to make sure the photos are perfect. Friends are notified when you're late or revise a post.
Earlier this year, BeReal refuted an analytics report that engagement on the app had fallen significantly, saying it still had 20 million daily active users. The company admitted that while it's been busy behind the scenes, it hasn't released many new features of late, so "people have been guessing what we've been up to and how things are going, and not always accurately.
Over the past couple of months, though it has launched an integration with Spotify showing what you're listening to when you post, along with the Bonus BeReal feature that lets you post more than one BeReal if you post on time. As with other social media apps, the RealChat feature looks like a way to boost time spent on the app and allow friends to comment privately on posts.