Poke was Facebook’s first foray into a messaging app, but it failed to gain traction. Today, Facebook is trying again with Slingshot.

Slingshot is the latest messaging app that copies features from Snapchat. Slingshot users trade photo and video based messages with each other that disappear after a few seconds.

There’s one big difference with Slingshot though. You can’t see a received message until you respond with a photo or video of your own. I guess that’s one way to have an impressive messages sent metric.

“With Slingshot, we wanted to build something where everybody is a creator and nobody is just a spectator,” wrote the Slingshot team in a blog post.

“When everyone participates, there’s less pressure, more creativity and even the little things in life can turn into awesome shared experiences. This is what Slingshot is all about.”

Some may frown at the idea of having to send a message before even viewing one, but Slingshot isn’t meant to be serious. It’s meant for trading selfies or cat pictures or whatever.

Plus, if it takes off, Facebook can tout some impressive message sent and received statistics over the next few months.

Slingshot is available right now in the U.S. on iPhone (iOS7) and Android devices (Jelly Bean and KitKat). Other regions can sling selfies around over the next few months.

Slingshot also lets you send message to more than one person at once.

Integration with Facebook itself is surprising light. Besides using Facebook to connect with friends that’s it. Most friends will be gathered through phone numbers from your smartphone’s address book. Slingshot also isn’t being marketed with the company’s branding. Looks like Facebook is keeping its expectations in check.

Already tried Slingshot? Share your thoughts below.


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