Snapchat, the ‘ephemeral messaging’ app, is to gain new functionality, including support for advertising, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.

Sources said the app maker has been holding discussions with advertisers and media companies about developing a new service called Snapchat Discovery, which will also allow users to read daily editions of publications and watch video clips within the app.

It is believed Snapchat Discovery will go live in November, building on the success of the company that made its name with the messaging app that deletes images after they have been viewed.

Snapchat claims that more than 700 million pictures are sent via its service and more than 500 million stories viewed every day. It recently added an option for users to chat with text.

Some companies already use the service to offer promotions, but aren’t being charged to do so. But, by creating a paid advertising service, the company would be able to capitalise on its popularity with young consumers.

Research firm comScore recently found that the app had a 32.9 per cent penetration of 18 to 34 year olds in the US.

The fact that Snapchat appears to be developing services that could generate revenue is likely to increase interest in the company, which reportedly rejected a $3 billion acquisition offer from Facebook in November last year.

The company was recently linked with investment talks which could have valued the business at $10 billion. However, more recent reports suggested these talks came to nothing.