SNOW - Selfie, Motion sticker, Fun camera

App review by
Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Media
SNOW - Selfie, Motion sticker, Fun camera App Poster Image
Selfie sharing similar to Snapchat, but iffy privacy.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Created for entertainment and not with educational intent.

Ease of Play

Interface isn't very intuitive, and minimal in-app help is available.

Violence

Some photo filters include bloody or scary images, such as a knife through a head or a skeleton face.

Sex

One motion sticker looks like the person in the photo is kissing a man and rubbing his back.

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One image includes a bottle that could be liquor.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that SNOW - Selfie, Motion sticker, Fun camera is both a photo-embellishing tool and a social media platform. Teens sign in using their Facebook or Line accounts or register with an email address. The terms of service specify that it is not intended for kids younger than 13. They can then add friends from their phone contacts or social media accounts or by entering another username. Messages automatically self-destruct after 48 hours, or the timing can be manually set at one, two, three, or more days. Teens can view friends' posts in their "story" feed, chat with them, or send photo or video. The app attempts to notify users if a screenshot is taken of their posts, though that is not fail-safe. Personal information given at registration as well as photo and contact data is collected. Read the privacy policy to find out more about the information collected and shared. Language options include English, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese.

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What's it about?

After creating a SNOW - SELFIE, MOTION STICKER, FUN CAMERA account via email or linking their Facebook or Line accounts, teens can add contacts and start sharing. The photo options abound: selfies with filters, selfies with motion stickers, selfies with text captions, GIF selfies, and short videos. Messages self-destruct, and teens may get a notification if their photo was captured by screenshot. Selfies are the focus, but the front camera can be used, too. Teens can post to their "story" feed or private-message their contacts. If a teen uses the Find Friends option, the app shares their username and real name with anyone who is also looking for friends and has that person's phone number in their contacts. 

Is it any good?

The fantastic selection of photo filters and fun features surpass those of other similar apps, but the default settings aren't great for teens. The Korean-based app rivals Snapchat with more selfie features and similar options, such as self-destructing messages. The social network aspect lags, though, simply from not having as many users. However, since teens can connect via Facebook or Line accounts, that may change very quickly. The biggest concern for teens is that the default setting is to receive messages from everyone using the app instead of just friends. It will also add friends from any linked accounts by default, which means that the app automatically adds Facebook "friends" whom kids might not know well if those people are also using the app. If teens go through the settings, add contacts by manually adding usernames, and adjust the default settings, then SNOW - Selfie, Motion sticker, Fun camera is another OK contender as a social app with lots of fun features.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about safe and appropriate sharing before kids start using photo apps like SNOW - Selfie, Motion sticker, Fun camera.

  • Parents also can remind kids that nothing, once posted to the internet, ever really goes away -- and it can come back to haunt them, even if it's supposed to "disappear" after 48 hours.

App details

For kids who love social networking and photography

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