22 Aug Instagram updates: Here’s everything you need to know
Instagram has a new update, and here’s our wrap of it.
Likes are seemingly irrelevant now, anyone can be an IG Story filter creator and you can make a group chat with people who actually want to be in it within two seconds.
Likes are gone
If you are living in Australia and have an Instagram account – it would be pretty hard to miss the absent like count on posts in your feed. What posts are people liking? How many likes did your friends photo get? Only the user who posted the image now knows. Currently running as a trial in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Japan and New Zealand, Instagram claim their main reasoning to the trial is to refocus user’s attention to the post content rather than the number of likes; a move towards a healthier mindset. Although we can’t see which posts are top performing, the Instagram algorithm hasn’t changed at all – the best performing posts are still worked in at the top of your feed.
This update drives users to interacting with Stories more often – as people are now choosing to engage with more authentic posts; be it from brands, friends and influencers alike.
Everyone can make an IG filter now
The tool which Facebook uses for building augmented reality effects for IG Stories, Spark AR, is now available to the public. Previously exclusive to selected creators, Instagram now allows anyone access to the service and to create and upload their own filters to Instagram.
Available to download and use on desktop, the studio by Facebook allows users to bring their biggest AR ideas to life, no matter what level of expertise. The software functions with or without code – textures, materials, sounds and 3D objects can all be incorporated into your IG story filter. The Spark AR Studio official site offers a large host of Tutorials and Guides to assist users in learning how to use the program.
Chat stickers have rolled out
Users can now add a “chat” sticker to their Stories, which enables viewers to request to join a group message on Instagram. The story poster using the sticker is able to approve or deny requests made by viewers. Instagram has encouraged this feature to be used for things such as planning events, trips, parties and more. A key way the network (owned by Facebook) uses to fend off competitor Snapchat, the messaging featuring encourages users to utilise the app for their numerous needs – rather than visiting another app.
We’ve heard whispers that Instagram may rebrand to “Instagram by Facebook” soon. It’s rumoured that Mark Zuckerberg is planning to potentially integrate WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook into a singular platform, which would allow users to cross-communicate across the apps. Stay tuned, we will keep you updated.