Grab It! Or Snap Out Of It!

One Man's Meat Is Another Man's Poison: Some people are snapping up Snap Preview Anywhere because they think this pop-up widget is cool and helpful. For others, they are snapping back because they think this gimmick is downright annoying or even a pain in the you-know-where.

Love It Or Hate It: Since it was made available to users sometime last year, Snap Preview Anywhere has, like PayPerPost,
come under some heavy artillery fire. But not without some defensive manoeuvre by those who see some benefits coming from it.

What's The Intended User Benefit?: Erik Wingren, head of Snap UX Research says:

"In a nutshell, our product is intended to enable users to 'look before leaping', saving many people a wasted click. I will, however, be the first to admit that this is a product that some people don't like, and this is why we have made sure to include a simple method to opt-out for those who don't like it (click the 'options' menu in the upper right of the preview bubble)."

Here are some gathered views on the pros and cons. You come to your own conclusion.

Snap Pros:

  • You can hover over links to make sure you type the URLs correctly.

  • You can quickly test for link rot in your blogroll and other links.

  • User can get a glimpse of where the link is at.

  • Not a gimmick but a step forward to a new service dimension for blog readers.

Snap Cons:

  • Annoying because when it hovers over a link its view is blocked by the pop-up.

  • Previewing functionality is indiscriminate. Every single link on the page gets this preview.

  • The technology loads more javascripts onto a page, affecting loading times.

  • It draws the eye away from the task at hand, causes annoyance and loss of concentration.

  • It's bling, a silly little shiney thing designed specifically to increase awareness of Snap.com.

    Well, to each his own. So where do you stand, folks?


AmyM said...

I hate it..

Anonymous said...


I wanted to say thanks for your detailed comparison of pros and cons of Snap Preview Anywhere. We are committed to making Snap Preview Anywhere (SPA) a useful feature for both the site owner and end user.

To address some of the 'cons'. We are improving SPA almost every week with features aimed at giving site owners and end-users even greater control in how to implement (and indeed “if” to implement) and interact with SPA.

Of note, we have several enhancements scheduled to release over this coming two weeks that in different ways will address these issues. Some of the most relevant ones currently to be released are:

(1) User interface enhancement to reduce the confusion about whether a link is SPA enabled, or not (ex. using an icon).
(2) Make it much easier for a site owner to point SPA to a particular type of link (ex. image, site, and pdf).
(3) Allow the site owner to totally customize a link, image, css, etc.

Rest assured that your viewpoints have been, and will continue to, inform the ongoing development of this product.

Thanks for your time and attention.

Jason Fields
Product Evangelist, Emerging Technology

AmyM said...

I hate it.

Anonymous said...

that is a nice plugin, but personally i am not using it cause i feel like it spams the reader a little bit

Anonymous said...

I can't stand it.

To be fair to Snap, you can visit their site & pick up a cookie that disables it. Works as well :-)

If you like the preview, but want to control it your self, get the CoolIris add-on for Firefox. It works in the same way, except it's YOU as the browser who chooses when to use it, not the site.

Lazada Malaysia