Why Instagram’s two newest features are total game changers

Instagram has made some big strides in 2016. The photo-sharing app took a page from Snapchat’s book and introduced Instagram Stories, and then upped their game by adding editing tools within the update. Also drawing inspiration from parent company Facebook, Instagram is adding two new features that will really make the app the whole shebang.

Today Instagram announced that it will be adding the option to send temporary content to followers through Instagram Direct. The expiring content can also be sent to group messages. Senders will be able to see who has watched, replayed or taken a screenshot of their message.

Like a Snapchat photo or video, the content will disappear after the recipient has viewed it.

According to Instagram’s blog, the new feature is easy to use. Instagram says, “Swipe right into the camera to take a photo or video, then tap the arrow to send it privately. You can choose a group or create one in just a few taps — and you can also send to individual friends at the same time.” You can also see individual’s responses within groups. Yikes! Watch out Snapchat!

Instagram is also launching a live video streaming service, based off of “Facebook Live.” This feature is part of Instagram Stories, and like the disappearing photos, these live photos will also expire when you’re done streaming.

“It’s easy to go live — just swipe right from feed to open the camera, tap the “Start Live Video” button and start sharing for up to an hour,” Instagram reports. “Your friends may get a notification when you go live so they can tune in. While you’re live, you can pin a comment for everyone to see or turn comments off altogether.”

There’s also a “Top Live” option so users can see the top live stories happening at that moment.


The app recently partnered with Boomerang, so users can create GIFs within their stories. Could Instagram be on its way to monopolizing the entire social media app market? Perhaps! With it’s new expiring content features, Snapchat could become obsolete. Live video could increase Instagram’s credibility as a news source. Only time will tell.

You can expect to see these new features in your app within the next couple of days. Viva la Instagram revolución!

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