Reported by TechCrunch, Instagram’s latest update includes a new voice messaging feature that works very similarly to voice messaging in Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Apple’s Messages app.
The feature is easy enough to trigger — just tap and hold the microphone button when in Instagram Direct to record your voice message. You can record a voice message up to one minute in length and remains in your Instagram Direct threads indefinitely.
Finally, the voice messages work in one-on-one and group chats on both Android and iOS.
Voice messaging is rolling out now to Instagram on both aforementioned platforms.
Nametags and school communities
October 5, 2018: Instagram introduced Nametags. Likely inspired by Snapchat’s Snap Codes, Nametags display a scannable area that includes your username. The idea is to forgo searching for people and just scan their Nametags instead.
Instagram also introduced school-specific communities for current and former college students. You can add your school and graduation year to your profile, as well as any school-based organizations you might be a part of.
Once you add a school, you become part of the university’s directory on Instagram. You and other students can then search profiles based on class year.
Support for video chat, revamped Explore page, and new camera effects
June 26, 2018: Instagram introduced real-time video chatting within Instagram Direct. To start a video chat, go to the Direct tab, open a message thread, and tap the camera icon in the right corner. You can video chat with one friend or with a group of four people at a time.
Next up is the refreshed Explore page that includes new topic channels. When you open the Explore page, you now see a tray at the top with several personalized channels, such as art, sports, beauty, fashion, and “For You.” Each channel includes posts for that specific topic.
Finally, the new camera effects feature designs from Ariana Grande, Buzzfeed, Liza Koshy, Baby Ariel, and the NBA. You will have to follow any of those accounts to get the corresponding camera effects, however.
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.