UPDATE: As the blue dot gets larger and starts to turn yellow and red, it means there are more stories that are viewable. You may have to hold down on the blue dot if it is very small. With most blue dots, there is only one 10 second Snapchat story. It takes several stories for the blue dot to turn yellow and then red. Red stories often last for more than a full minute.
On June 21st, 2017 Snapchat released the new Snap Map in which users can share their location as well as see what is going on around them. The first thing most people notice about the new Snapchat Map is the blue dots close to their area. So, what exactly are these blue dots and what do they mean?
It is our understanding that the blue dots are high amounts of Snapchat activity. These are the places in which people are sharing Snapchat Stories both publicly and privately. You can click on some of the blue dots and Snapchat Stories will actually appear. Interestingly, not all blue dots are clickable.
As there is more activity the blue dots turn yellow and then red. In large cities like Washington, DC and Charlotte there are very red dots that will allow you to watch Snapchat Stories from those areas. It is also interesting to note that some of the map actually has businesses in which people are sharing stories.
Snapchat is feeling the pressure from Instagram so they are trying to make Snapchat more social. We will see if this helps them and their stock price. At the outset, most people are very confused with the Snap Map and have no idea what to do or if they want to share their locations with friends or to the public.
Sharing a location with the public could be extremely dangerous as people will know exactly where you are. We will continue to research to find out if it shows your exact location or just your general area.