Last month, Instagram announced a number of new features making their way to the app, including support for video chat, a revamped Explore page, and new camera effects. On Tuesday, the Facebook-owned company announced that these new features would start rolling out to everyone.
The most notable new feature coming to Instagram is support for real-time video chatting in Instagram Direct. This news comes just a few months after Snapchat announced support for video chats. But, as per usual, the Instagram feature will probably be better implemented.
To start a video chat, go to the Direct tab, open a message thread, and tap the camera icon in the right corner. That’s it! Once your friend picks up, you can minimize the video and multitask on Instagram if you’d like.
You can video chat with one friend or with a group of four people at a time. You can’t video chat with people you block, and they can’t video chat you. You can also mute people if you don’t want them contacting you.
Next up, Instagram is adding a new batch of camera effects designed by Ariana Grande, Buzzfeed, Liza Koshy, Baby Ariel, and the NBA to the Instagram camera. In order to access those camera effects, you’ll need to follow any of those accounts.
Lastly, Instagram’s explore section is gaining a feature called topic channels. When you open the Explore tab, you’ll see a tray at the top with a number of personalized channels that include art, sports, beauty, fashion, and a channel called ‘For You.’ If you see a channel you’re interested in, tap on it, and you’ll be shown more posts relating to that topic.
All of these features are rolling out to Android and iOS users starting today.
Mute users without unfollowing them
June 26, 2018: Instagram introduced a new feature called Mute. As you might have guessed, the new setting tweak lets you curate your feed by muting certain people and brands you follow. You’re still a follower of those people and brands, but they won’t clog up your feed.
When you mute someone you follow, you will still be notified of comments or posts you are tagged in. If the person has their account set to “private,” you will still be able to view their feed. The only thing mute does is prevent that person’s posts from appearing in your personal feed.
Instagram update lets you buy stuff without leaving the app
May 3, 2018: The payments feature lets Instagram users add their credit or debit cards, set up a security PIN, and buy stuff without leaving the app. One of the first businesses to support the feature is dinner reservation app Resy, though Instagram said additional businesses will support the feature over time. Eventually, you will be able to buy things like movie tickets through Instagram.
Instagram lets you upload your Stories all at once
April 24, 2018: Instagram not lets you upload multiple pictures and videos to your Story at once. You can up to 10 images or video files to your Story and re-order them to make your Story. Instagram will automatically suggest location tags for your Story media by using timestamps and geolocation.
Instagram now lets you ‘regram’ public posts to your story
February 7, 2018: Instagram is rolling out access to a new regram feature. Essentially, you can share and add public feed posts from other users to your story. As you can see from the video here, not only can you resize it, but you can also edit it by adding stickers or drawing on it before posting. Of course, you have the option to disable others from sharing your posts in the app’s settings.