Tech, Trends

Meet BeReal, Gen-Z’s alternative to Instagram

Post one photo a day in a random 2-minute window.

words by: Sahar Khraibani
May 16, 2022

A new photo-sharing app social media platform forbids users from posting modified or edited photos in order to encourage them to be more genuine and real. Fittingly enough, the app’s name is BeReal and although many Millennials have not heard of it yet, it seems that the app is gaining a lot of traction among younger generations, namely Gen-Z.



According to Apptopia, a software company that tracks and analyzes app performance, BeReal’s monthly user base has expanded by more than 315% this year. Even though the app was launched in early 2020 by a French entrepreneur, the majority of its users (around 65%) have only started signing up this year.


The name of the app says it all. The focus is on authenticity, where users are invited to share a photo of what they’re doing at a specific moment once a day, allowing friends to get a glimpse into their lives without filters or photo adjustments — the app doesn’t have built-in filters or editing tools.


This results in photos that are very different from their social media counterparts, namely Instagram, which are extremely edited, polished or curated photos.


How does this app work?

BeReal has a straightforward premise. Once you download the app, you’ll receive a daily notification reminding you to “BeReal.” That means you only have 2 minutes to snap and share a photo of whatever you’re doing.


You may be thinking: If the app prompts you, then some people could be prepared and post already edited images right? But there is no set time. The notification is sent at random times of the day, making the app even more authentic.


The app’s website says: “​​Everyday at a different time, everyone is notified simultaneously to capture and share a Photo in 2 Minutes. A new and unique way to discover who your friends really are in their daily life.”


That means a window into your life could open at any time. When it does, the app prompts you to snap a picture of whatever you’re doing at the time. It takes 2 photos: One of you and one of what’s in front of you. Videos are not yet permitted on BeReal. The result is a social and photographic feed full of unedited images of people doing generally mundane, normal, and unglamorous activities like sleeping in their pajamas, completing homework, or making dinner.


With only one post each day, there’s no need to waste time scrolling through your friends’ photos. Lurkers and stalkers are eliminated because you can only see your friends’ posts if you share a photo. Because the program operates in real-time, some users switch off their location for privacy reasons.


We don’t know if this app will gain significant traction, but it definitely has potential to change the game of social media, making it a more casual and welcoming space. You can download BeReal here.


In related news, have you ever wondered why hate-stalking feels so good?


Photo via BeReal