Instagram steps up to super app status with new messaging upgrades

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Instagram’s DM just got a makeover. The redesign, which adds seven new features to improve the platform’s messaging functionality, is part of a larger context reinvent from Instagram away from image sharing and towards super app status.

Among the features announcement Thursday is the ability for users to share 30-second Spotify music previews in messages, send silent messages, create polls in group messages, and easily see who’s online. Revisions will also allow users to reply to posts while browsing their feed, meaning all your doom scrollers will never have to take your eyes off the terrible calamity or targeted advertising that might catch your eye! The new silent feature, on the other hand, will allow more considerate users to message people without a potentially annoying notification by adding a @silent tag to their DM.

Features will not necessarily apply to everyone. In one declaration sent to TechCrunch, Instagram said the music sharing, chat themes and quick send features will only work for users who have opted into an enhanced version of messaging. introduced in 2020 which allows cross communication between Instagram and Messenger. Today’s changes come a week after application reintroduced its chronological feed which allows users to view posts in reverse chronological order command with a little less algorithmic shenanigans.

Instagram’s “no longer a photo sharing app”

While the messaging tweaks may seem minor and incremental (and of course they are), they’re also part of a broader philosophical shift by society to bolster Instagram’s overall app capabilities. Last year, Instagram boss Adam Mosseri published a video on the platform where he proclaimed that Instagram was “no longer a photo-sharing app”. In the video, Mosseri described the company’s plans to improve the app’s presence in video, e-commerce, messaging (cough cough)and relationships with online creators.

“The way people connect with their close friends has changed a lot over the last five years or so and it’s shifted primarily towards messaging, away from Feed and Stories,” Mosseri said. “The number one reason people say they use Instagram in search is to be entertained.”

This pivot to bolster Instagram’s presence as one kind of all-in-one super app comes at a turbulent time for the Big Blue Facebook app.

Earlier this year, Facebook released its first quarterly report. decline daily active users in the company’s history, a factor driven in part by its abysmal performance among younger users. Instagram, on the other hand, is more attractive to younger users, although it faces its own Questions as well as. The changes also come as users flock to competitors like TikTok that have managed to solidify their presence in short videos. Mosseri alluded to the pressure from TikTok in his statement.

“Let’s be honest, there’s really serious competition going on right now,” Mosseri said. “TikTok is huge, YouTube is even bigger and there’s many other upstarts too.

There is one major area of ​​communication that Instagram has spent less time on: voicemail. instagram added the feature in 2018 although it didn’t seem to take off in the same way in some of Meta’s other apps. Just this week, for example, WhatsApp revealed users of its platform send 7 billion voice messages every day.

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