US-based multi-media messaging platform Snapchat is launching in four Indian languages including Marathi, Gujarati, Punjabi, and Hindi.
“Snapchat is happy to announce its localisation into four Indian languages...Snapchat launched Discover in India last year, and is now localising into regional languages to engage and excite Snapchatters to share content in their very own language,” it said in a statement.
The move is important as Snapchat’s user base remained constant in Q4 of FY18.
A TRAI report published in September last year said there are 512.26 million internet subscribers in India as of June 2018, of which close to 95.78% accessed internet through their mobile phones.
According to a 2017 joint report from KPMG and Google by 2021, India would have nearly 536 million internet users accessing content in languages other than English. Vernacular languages, hence, have emerged as a significant force on the internet.
In the last year or so, it has turned its head towards India for customer acquisition. In October last year, Snapchat hired Raheel Khurshid, former Twitter India head as its country expert. To woo Indian internet users, it recently released localised lenses, filters, and stickers on Holi, for Indian Premier League. It also collaborated with Indian women artists from across India to develop creative tools on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
Snapchat faces tough competition from Bytedance-backed TikTok and Helo in India that are already available in local languages.