I left Instagram for BeReal, my opinion after 3 months

There are those who have completely cut themselves off from social networks and those who download BeReal, the French anti-Instagram application that wants to improve your mental health, or at least prevent it from negative effects. on the screens. In April 2022, they are over 7.4 million have downloaded the app. 65% have done so this year, even though the app is still two years old and had only 10,000 users in January 2021.

To end the time wasted on my phone and the hundreds of superficial photos promoted by the Instagram algorithm, I left the American application for BeReal. three month period. An interesting experience, especially in a French application, launched by Kévin Perreau, who went through Ecole 42 (Xavier Niel’s school for developers). In hyper-growth, I follow the (horrible) evolution of the application, my usage and its distribution to users.

If no one feels defeated or upset with the application, BeReal is clearly following its own path, which has not yet been explored by the competitor. In my opinion of BeReal, I will detail three main points to use the application (and social networks in general): my daily use of time, sanity and recreation. Other editors in lemon squeezer join me on the adventure to give you their own opinion.

To end the time wasted on my phone and the hundreds of superficial photos promoted by Instagram’s algorithm, I left the American application for BeReal

If there is no filter, than the opportunity

Posting is customary in BeReal one picture per day. To do this, the application chooses to send you a notification, at a random time of day (can also be at night, early). It is not mandatory to respect the timing of the posting announcement, but it is important to post so you can view photos shared by your friends. To see other people’s content, you need to post yourself.

Between Instagram and Snapchat, the French app only offers one photo per day (it’s possible to restore it) and only in the form of a story (but broadcast in the form of an internal stream to scroll). It is not it is not possible to send a photo to a particular user in the form of a message. When posting, it is possible, however, to choose between posting only to friends or to the public. The “public” approach is useless at the moment, but it seems to open up a path to popularity, if one day influential accounts come out of the application.

Without filters, for now, BeReal image capture has the particularity of using both the front camera and the main camera. So it’s hard to escape a selfie, early in the morning. The goal is to share on a daily basis no glitter and no play. In addition, during the shooting, a countdown of 3 minutes was triggered to take the photo. A way to force reality, once again.

The application has the same without a bit of detail in the playing codes and the stage. There is a slight delay between the shot on the main camera and the front camera. This little time allows you to play with the angle for the selfie. If you take a low-angle photo using the main camera, you can review the viewing angle directly after clicking the capture button (the selfie photo will only be taken a second or two later).

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Waiting for new friends… or not

Within weeks, BeReal gave us a glimpse into our lives. And watch out if you’re going through a period of routine, the application sends us a pretty sad image of the face itself. By constantly taking the same kind of photo to describe your day, our daily life becomes even more boring and we quickly find ourselves asking the question : “Should I post a photo now or wait for a better day to come?”. In addition, it is possible to take a lambda photo to consult others ’photos, then delete yourself (even if the button is not easily accessible the first time).

The question arose very quickly our list of friends. BeReal is based on the Facebook model and not Instagram, with a need for a subscription. When I started the application, some of my contacts had accounts and I found myself very easy, unable to consult the content of others. So, I consider myself with all my registered relatives, and the interest that BeReal would have in continuing the daily life of the closest relatives, those who would be interested in passing on a vacuum cleaner to Sunday morning.

With 315% growth in monthly active users year-to-date, I see the app change as my contacts have increased participated in the application. To track their use, that is double or stop. Some never stopped publishing while others quickly fell into inactivity. And me, I changed my interest to see a lot of people there for less boredom.

In my contacts, it stopped or doubled. Some didn’t stop posting while others quickly fell into inactivity

BeReal test application

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The problem with BeReal and my opinion

With a long list of friends (we were talking about twenty people instead of 3 when I registered), my use of the app has changed, to the detriment of BeReal. Instead of finding more interest, now my posting limits in my daily life are tightening. Too close for everyone to see, too boring to share… there are many more reasons not to take a photo one day … or always.

There are more and more reasons for not taking a photo a day… or often

I wouldn’t have said no to a video mode. Maybe so I can show more if I share a moment outside my house. Or to be more creative, more fun. With its current formula, use is very limited and may be summed up in giving news and if one exaggerates the part: says that one is alive.

Be True Memories

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Use of BeReal is constrained by its interface and model. But in my opinion, it’s possible to post the same kind of content on Instagram (or on Snapchat, for more off). The real advantage of BeReal, on the other hand, is worrying screen time. We can’t pass not to exceed ten minutes a day in the app. Nothing more can be done.

As for the fun and entertaining part, it all depends on your list of contacts and their lives. Between poorly framed photographs taken with no other interest than respect for the daily rhythm requested by the application, and members who, like me, found themselves troubled should taking pictures of the dead times of our dayshard to pay and huge interest.

Actual disconnection does not involve a change in application

And the problem is probably there: wanting so much reliability, BeReal forgets that our time spent on our screens is mostly our downtime, our moments of calm and relaxation. The remaining highlights and interesting moments to share will be given priority in the Instagram stories. And if like me you prefer to delete Instagram, then it’s not for another application that you want to share your moments with, but if you don’t have a smartphone in your hand. For the actual disconnection does not go through the application change.

The opinion of other editorial staff

Romain Vitt, head of Tech and JV section. The promise of BeReal seems interesting to me on paper: a limited social network that forces us to share only one content each day with the people who matter. To stay connected on social networks, so I found there a way to take while continuing to share photos with my loved ones.

Unfortunately, BeReal is never as attractive. If the promise is beautiful, the reality is different. First, because the application can easily become invasive if you activate notifications. Each day, we would receive an alert telling us that we had not shared our photo of the day. Then another to let us know that our friends have just published them.

Also, the application suffers from the same limitation as most alternative social networks: there is no one there. Other than Hadrien (author of this article), no one around me has used the application. Since then, the social network has lost all its social character, and therefore its primary interest.

All your questions about BeReal

Who made BeReal?

BeReal founder is Kevin Perreau, who joined Alexis Barreyat to launch the app in 2020.

How many users are there on BeReal?

As of April 2022, 7.4 million people downloaded the app worldwide, making it the top 5 most downloaded apps on the App Store in the United States. The number of BeReal users is difficult to determine, as many users remain inactive after a specific period of discovery.

Who invested in BeReal?

BeReal has already raised more than $ 30 million in Series A thanks to investment funds Andreessen Horowitz (A16z), Accel, and DST. Currently, this is the only capital of BeReal (which does not charge its users and does not broadcast advertising).

Where to download BeReal?

BeReal is available in the App Store (iPhone) and the Play Store (Android). The application is only available on smartphones.

Who is BeReal?

Unlike other social networks, BeReal has a model that will appeal to children and the elderly from its inception. The application is somewhere between Snapchat and Instagram with a format suitable for those who don’t want to spend a lot of time on their smartphone and want to guarantee the reliability of publications.

What languages ​​are available at BeReal?

It is possible to use BeReal in French, English, German, Spanish, Japanese, Korean, and Mandarin.

What are the differences between BeReal and Instagram?

Don’t rely on BeReal’s messaging, stories, likes or subscriber counters. Unlike Instagram, too, you can only post one photo per day and can’t apply filters or dig into its image gallery. Videos are also not supported by BeReal.

BeReal test application

WE are in love

  • Significant reduction in time spent on our smartphone
  • Another way to get news and deliver it
  • If there is no filter, goodbye to the superficial

We have little love

  • Use is very limited
  • A great application to find your life without interest …
  • Being short videos is not a denial


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