Instagram continues to come up with new features to better improve user experience. They’ve been releasing new features almost every week, making it a challenge to keep up with it all. But more importantly, these changes have been beneficial to users worldwide, with an area of focus towards marketers. And according to Wyzowl, 44% of marketers have used Instagram videos, and of that, 78% have reported it as effective, while 44% of marketers say they plan to use video throughout the up-coming year.
To put the pace of change in perspective, here are some of Instagram’s latest developments:
‘You’re All Caught Up’
This week, IG has released a new element that notifies users once they have viewed every new post within the last two days.This new feature could help users track their time spent on the app as it notifies them once there are no new posts – stopping them from mindlessly scrolling in the hopes of not missing new content.
This week, Android Police has reported that Instagram has also been testing out a new element that could improve user interactivity. Though the platform itself hasn’t yet confirmed this update, the new feature would allow users to add open-ended questions to their stories, making content more interactive between followers.
Currently, you are already able to add polls with multiple choice answers to your IG stories, and you are also able to directly message someone in reply to somebody’s story. If brought to market, these open-ended questions could benefit brands as they would be able to engage with their audience on a deeper level.
4-Way Group Video Call
Last week, Instagram made 4-way group video calls possible. And what’s unique about this feature is that unlike some other video group call platforms, IG’s lets you continue your group call while minimizing the screen, allowing you to continue to browse through Instagram as you normally would. This form of group calling allows users to browse the platform simultaneously with their friends, making the overall experience feel much more interactive.
Explore Page Topics
Additionally, Instagram also incorporated new topic channels within the platform’s Explore Page, allowing users to choose the specific topic they wish to browse. These topic sections can be found at the top of the Explore Page, and they contain relevant content related to each unique topic. This feature helps users focus their searches in order to find a specific type of content.
Finally, one of Instagram’s recent, and biggest addition was the creation of the platform’s new internal app called IGTV, which can be used as a standalone app, or within the Instagram app itself. Essentially, IGTV allows users to watch long-form vertical video content ranging in topics from a variety of different creators. These videos can be up to an hour long each and are meant to be watched with your mobile device. Like traditional TV, IGTV video content begins playing the moment you open the app, and it also has channels. However, these channels are based on content creators – if you follow a creator, their channel will then pop-up on your IGTV app for you to watch. Through this app, you can browse through videos based on who you’re following, most popular and even continue watching. The nice part about IGTV is that anybody can be a creator and all you have to do to start is by uploading a video.
It’s evident that this social media platform is on the rise to becoming one of the most innovative apps out there. There are constant developments that enhance the platform’s user experience, which will only encourage people to use it more. And according to Ryerson University’s 2018’s report, 61% of online Canadians who have the app, visit it daily, making them loyal users.
So, what’s next for the app?
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