If you’ve spent any time binging on Instagram Stories over the last year, you would have probably noticed a trend. Apart from your increasing influx of pictures and videos, the Instagram app on your iPhone must be showing a lot more of polls, quizzes, text updates, and AMA-style question and answer sessions. That’s right. For those of you who were too ignorant to see, with a heavy heart, I say that Instagram Stories are moving beyond their photographic roots. And the latest Facebook F8 developers’ conference proves it.
With a plethora of millennials (including influencers, creators and online business owners) moving from Facebook to Instagram in search for greener, more hip pastures, Zuckerberg recognized that a measly (not really!) photo-sharing app is now at a scale and level of cultural ubiquity that is capable of carrying the torch — at least partially. This explains the redesigning of Instagram’s in-app camera and introducing a couple of new features to make the app more appealing to its audience – influencers and regulars alike!
Lowdown of the New Features
The first new feature to make an appearance at the F8 developer conference is a redesigned camera with what Instagram is calling ‘Create Mode.’ Artistic much?
Well, the fancy new mode will make it easy for Instagrammers to create posts that aren’t entirely reliant on pictures or videos. This is an especially appealing proposition for ardent Stories fans who’ve built their audiences using the Snapchat’s story style format.
On to the second feature which consists of dedicated shopping tags. These will allow influencers, artists, or celebrities to tag clothing, fitness gear, accessories,
“Starting next week, you can shop inspiring looks from the creators you love without leaving Instagram. Instead of taking a screenshot or asking for product details in comments or Direct, you can simply tap to see exactly what your favorite creators are wearing and buy it on the spot.“
Oh almost forgot! They also introduced a new donation sticker! For what purpose, you ask? To allow users to raise money for non-profit organizations, charities, etc. right from the stories — waiting for the sucker punch? Well, here it is. The donation sticker will be available only in The US.
How to Use the Donation Sticker
If any of you lucky suckers living the Apple life in the US are curious, here’s how you can use the new donation feature.
“To use this new feature, open the camera, take or upload a photo, tap the sticker icon and select the donation sticker from the tray. Choose a non-profit to support and customize your fundraiser using creative tools. Once it’s live, swipe up on your story to view the total amount raised. 100% of the money you raise on Instagram goes to the non-profit you are supporting.”
It looks like Zuckerberg is all set to turn your Instagram app on iPhone into Facebook’s mini-me. Anyhoo, there’s more update. Facebook also promised a redesigned Facebook app with full focus on privacy. Well, about time I say.