In a press event last Thursday, Instagram founder Kevin Systrom announced Instagram Direct (available now for iOS 5.0 and Android 5.0, the Windows Phone beta version will have to wait) leveling up its photo and video sharing service to allow Instagram’ers to send photos and videos privately and exchange chat-like messages.
With the version 5.0 update, your home feed is refreshed with a new inbox icon at the top right corner, tap it to see photos and videos that people have sent to you. When posting, you now have two new options: tap on Followers to share to your followers like we’re all used to, or share to specific Instagram’ers by tapping on Direct, you can then select the names of up to 15 Instagram’ers you want to send your photo or video to, then finish up your post with a caption and send.
Once sent, you can see who checked out and liked your post, as well as watch your recipients exchanging messages in real time. Instagram’ers who follow each other can exchange messages, but for those who don’t, the message will show up as a pending request in the inbox.
Aside from Instagram Direct, the app’s UI has been slightly updated, such as the log-in pages. While we’re used to just double-tapping and commenting on a post that caught our attention, this update should make Instagram’ing a more engaging photo and video sharing experience, as it now allows you to interact directly, privately with the people you care most about.
Keep the good vibes rolling! #KTGVR