BeReal: The new social media app you've never heard of 

There's a new social media app on the block, but how does it work and is it safe for children to use?
BeReal: The new social media app you've never heard of 

The tagline says 'Your Friends for Real' and it's exactly what it sounds like. 

BeReal is a new social media app that's doing things differently. It launched in 2019, but is only taking off with social media users in the last few weeks. It's currently number four in the free apps chart on the App Store. 

How it works

You get a notification once a day, at a random time, and you must stop what you're doing and take a snap. You have two minutes to take your picture, and it takes from both front and back cameras. If you don't post your BeReal, you can't view your friend's posts. You can react to your friend's posts with "RealMojis", which are more pictures of your face, with prompts of happy, sad, angry etc. 

The idea behind the app is to encourage users to live in the moment, and to come away from the filtered and curated posts of other apps.

Does it work?

As the app has no special features for photo editing, the basic premise of showing your best unfiltered self is definitely possible. 

Like every app however, only time will tell if it maintains the wholesome ethos it's going for. It could be just another social media trend, that will pass, or it really could encourage us all to approach our phone cameras a little differently. 

Is it safe?

The app is rated 12+ on the App Store, so it is not suitable for young kids. Like every app, it is can be as safe as you make it. Users have to accept friends to allow them to see their content. There is a map feature that shows your location, but it can be turned off in settings — something concerned parents should ensure is off if it is being used by their tweens and teens. 

Should you download it?

While it's another app to add to your scroll list every day, the idea is fun and it's a lovely way to see what people are up to in the little everyday moments social media doesn't always capture. If you're looking for polished Instagram perfection, it may not be for you.

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