Snapchat is an incredibly popular way to share photos and videos, and all you need to do to start using it is sign up!

Chances are, if you've heard of Snapchat but aren't already using it, you're a bit curious to learn more. Well, that's exactly what we aim to show you. Although it's different than the built-in Messages app, and can seem confusing at first, we think you'll find Snapchat is simple to understand once you get going. So, consider this a jumping off point. This is how you set up and start using Snapchat.

How to download Snapchat on iPhone

You can download Snapchat right from the App Store

Free - Download now

If for any reason the link above doesn't work:

  1. Launch the App Store on your iPhone.
  2. Tap on the Search tap.
  3. Type in Snapchat
  4. Tap on Snapchat in the results.
  5. Tap Get.

How to create a Snapchat account on iPhone

Once you've downloaded Snapchat, you can sign up for an account.

  1. Launch Snapchat from your Home screen.
  2. Tap on Sign Up.
  3. Enter your email address.
  4. Enter a (hard to guess) password
  5. Dial in your birthday (no cheating!).
  6. Pick a username. (Unfortunately, there are a lot of selfie lovers on Snapchat so I had to get clever.)

  7. Verify your account. Snapchat gives you two options to prove you're human:
    • Enter your phone number and you'll get an SMS with an activation code
    • Hunt for ghosts in a grid of nine images.
  8. Add your contacts. (Snapchat uses your contacts to help you find any friends already using the service.
  9. Tap the + button (looks like +) add as few or as many friends as you like.
  10. Tap Continue when you're done.

How to add Friends by scanning a Snapcode

A Snapcode is a lot like a QR code. It's a unique image that represents an individual Snapchat account. If you're talking to a friend in person, or they've sent you their Snapcode, and want to add them to your Snapchat, it's quick and easy to do.

  1. Launch Snapchat
  2. Center your camera on their Snapcode. (If they don't know where to find it, just ask them to tap the ghost icon at the top of their Snapchat screen).
  3. Touch and hold on the image of their Snapcode.

When it works, you'll get a confirmation!

If you want to practice, or you're simply looking for some Snapchatters to get started with, several of us here at iMore are waiting for you!

How to add Friends manually

If you don't have a Snapcode handy, you can add friends the old-fashioned way — by username!

  1. Tap Add Friends to see a list of other ways to add friends.
  2. Enter the Snapchat username if you have it.
  3. Tap on a Contact to add existing contacts who already use Snapchat (if you granted Snapchat access to your contacts).
  4. Tap Add by Snapcode if your friend sent you a screenshot of their Snapcode. (Snapchat will show you your camera roll with images it thinks might be a Snapcode at the top. Just tap the Snapcode screenshot to add your friend.)
  5. Tap Add Nearby if you and your friend(s) have "Add Nearby" open. You'll be able to see their username and add them to your friends list. This is a particularly handy feature if you've got a big group of friends you'd like to add.