Instagram Introduces Instagram Direct

Above: Instagram founder Kevin Systrom at an event in New York today

Instagram held a press event today in New York to unveil Instagram Direct—a new service that allows you to share photos and videos through direct messaging.

Here’s the lowdown: The share button has been replaced by two separate tabs: “Followers” and “Direct.” Selecting the latter will bring up a list of your followers and you simply tap the names of those you want to send your picture or video to. Once your creation has been sent, recipients will receive a notification, and can view it by going to the new inbox icon located at the top right of the application. This is where the direct messages will go as opposed to your feed. In addition, you will be notified of who has viewed the post. If you send a picture or video to someone who does not follow you, they will be notified of the request and have the option to view or ignore it. Once someone accepts a post from you, they will receive subsequent messages directly, as opposed to via request.

For those of you resistant to change, there is no need to fret. Instagram says that the change will feel “natural” to its users—you can still comment and like direct photos and videos the same way as always. And aside from the new inbox icon, there aren’t any major visual changes to the updated app.

The new version of Instagram is available for download as of today. You can find out more and check out a video of the app’s new features in action on the Instagram blog.


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