BeReal: what is it and why is it so well-known?
Author: Julia Lasinska
Date of Publication: 27/10/2022
Does “BeReal” ring a bell? If you’re staying up to date with the most known and trending social media apps, I’m sure you will know what I’m talking about. But if you don’t, here’s basically what BeReal is and how it works.
BeReal is a photo-sharing app launched by former GoPro employee Alexis Barreyat in December 2019. As the name already suggests, its main focus is a real, authentic connection between users. BeReal aims to step away from over-edited pictures and videos on other popular social media platforms, such as Instagram.
The app basically sends you a notification when you have to post your daily picture at the most random moment of the day. Apart from that, it gives you 2 minutes to take a photo simultaneously from the front and back camera on your phone. Yet no filters or special effects allowed. You can have retakes, but your friends will see how many times you retook the picture.
Another authentic thing about the app is the way in which you can engage with BeReals that your friends have posted. You can either react with “RealMojis” or with “Instant RealMoji”. These are the small selfies you can add as personalized emojis again, without filters or editing, just the raw selfie.
Even though the application appeared in 2020, it only started being popular this year. It now ranks fourth in the list of most downloaded social media apps, just behind Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest. According to SensorTower, an app tracking company, BeReal has been one of the top ten most downloaded free social networking apps since the beginning of this year. As of October 2022, users have installed the app over 53 million times worldwide, and this number just keeps on growing.
BeReal is where Snapchat meets TikTok. Snapchat was all about taking random pictures and sending them to your friends. On the other hand TikTok users produce much more organic and unedited content than what we see on Instagram.
It seems like BeReal offers an ideal solution to escape the perfectly edited pictures and videos on the other social media platforms. Thus you can show your friends what your real life looks like. The social media world is clearly changing and people are stepping away from the traditional content. In fact, the habit of scrolling through their phones for hours is getting out of date. This is because people used to feel frustrated that the life of others is much more ‘instagrammable’ than their own.
As the owners of the app have shared themselves through Twitter, maybe BeReal is exactly what people needed. What we mean is a step forward into the real world, free of filters, advertising and sponsored content.
BeReal. Your friends for real. (n.d.). Sensor Tower. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://app.sensortower.com/overview/1459645446?country=US
Clarke, L. (2022, August). ‘It’s a modern-day Facebook’ – how BeReal became Gen Z’s favourite app. The Guardian. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.theguardian.com/media/2022/aug/21/its-a-modern-day-facebook-how-bereal-became-gen-zs-favourite-app
Fedewa, J. (2022, September 1). What Is BeReal, and Why Is Everyone Copying It? How-To Geek. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.howtogeek.com/829769/what-is-bereal-and-why-is-everyone-copying-it/
Godoy, J. D. (2021, July). Dispo, Poparazzi y BeReal: las poco conocidas plataformas emergentes que desafían a Instagram. El País. https://elpais.com/tecnologia/2021-07-02/dispo-poparrazzi-y-bereal-las-poco-conocidas-plataformas-emergentes-que-desafian-a-instagram.html
Hutchinson, A. (2022, April). Rising Social App BeReal is Gaining Momentum, with Downloads Up 315% This Year. Social Media Today. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/rising-social-app-bereal-is-gaining-momentum-with-downloads-up-315-this-y/621929/
Shenoy, B. R. (2022, August). What Is the Social Media App “BeReal” and Why Is It Surging in Popularity? Medium. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://medium.com/predict/what-is-the-social-media-app-bereal-and-why-is-it-surging-in-popularity-6568c67e0e48
Sklencar, A. (2022, October 7). 18 Stats to Know About BeReal App (Updated Oct. 7th, 2022). Online Optimism. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.onlineoptimism.com/blog/bereal-stats-app-figures-data-be-real-numbers-to-know/