"We’ve provided one Replay per Snapchatter per day, sometimes frustrating the millions of Snapchatters who receive many daily Snaps deserving of a Replay," the company said in an official blog post. "But then we realized — a Replay is like a compliment! So why stop at just one?"
According to Snapchat, the replays work like this: you can use a replay on any snap you receive but, crucially, can only replay any single snap once.
To this point, Snapchat has made its money off advertising, and has not previously charged users for any part of its service. The company, which reportedly turned down a $3 billion acquisition offer from Facebook, has been valued at roughly $19 billion on private markets. But a recent report from Gawker, citing leaked financial documents, indicated that Snapchat had generated just $3.1 million in revenue last year.
Still, the move is sort of an odd one; nearly every other video service lets you play things again as many times as you'd like, for free. (Heck, Vine flat out embraces the loop.) The distinguishing point of Snapchat for the average user has always been its impermanence — so it seems a little out of character not only to move away from that, but also to charge for the privilege of doing so.
It could be that there are tons of Snapchat users out there who are dying for replays and willing to drop the 33 cents per view to get one final look at a message. But even the company itself acknowledged that the cost of a view is a little "pricey" in its blog post.
The company also introduced a new feature called Lenses on Tuesday, which lets you overlay some goofy effects on your selfie, such as putting cartoonish hearts over your eyes. That feature is free.