BeReal is one of many “Real” apps exploding in growth with young users looking for real connections with people they know in real life.
According to data.ai, BeReal ranks 4th in downloads in the US, UK and France for the first quarter of 2022 so far, behind only Instagram, Snapchat and Pinterest.
BeReal goes against what social networks have become. Instead of curated looks that focus on the beautiful parts of life, BeReal users showcase what they’re doing right now and share those real photos with their friends. Their true friends.
It’s true. And the real thing is different for a generation of social media users who were brought up on influencers and filters.
As the app says when you access its page:
Every day at a different time, BeReal users are simultaneously notified to capture and share a Photo in 2 Minutes.
A news and unique way to find out who your friends really are in their daily lives.
The app has seen monthly users increase by more than 315% according to Apptopia, which tracks and analyzes app performance.
“Push notifications are sent simultaneously around the world at different times each day,” the company said in a statement. “It’s a secret how the time is chosen each day, it’s not random.”
The application does not allow any modification and any filter. They want users to show a “slice of their life”.
Today’s social media users have seen their online lives flooded with ultra-organized social media. The pandemic has led to more time spent online than ever. Social networks have become a means of escape. The reality was ugly. Social media was funny, pretty and exciting.
Enter BeReal where users are invited to share two real-life moments on a surprise timeline. New apps are often fun because they’re new. However, the huge growth in BeReal usage by college-age users points to something more than the new factor.
For the dadFor several years, experts have warned that social media is dangerous to our mental health. The dopamine hits of likes and shares are based on photos and videos filled with second and third takes, lens changes, lighting enhancements and filters. Constant comparisons are the norm. And while we know the world we present on our social pages isn’t exactly an honest portrayal of life, we can’t help but experience FOMO when we see our friends and followers and those that we follow live the moments of their lives, buy their new thing, try out the perfect new product, play in their decorated Pinterest-worthy spaces that we wish we had.
Nothing we see is actually real on our apps. We remove our media that doesn’t match what we want to portray and try again from a different angle and shoot the second, third and fourth takes which make us look a bit better.
We spend hours flipping through videos on our For You walls and Instagram Stories curated by algorithms that know us better than we know ourselves.
BeReal is the opposite of that. It’s simple, fast and real. It’s community and fun, but it’s a moment instead of becoming the time sink of our usual social media which, while fun, is also meant to sell stuff, including all of our data.
It will be interesting to watch BeReal and see if it continues on the promised path and if the growth continues. People are looking for something. Maybe the reality is this answer.