Instagram’s Stories feature is constantly in a heated battle to one-up (or some say copy) Snapchat, and another upgrade this week could see the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app gain more ground.
Instagram announced on Thursday the ability to reply to Instagram Stories with a photo or video. (And for the diehard Insta set, yes, that means you can use Boomerang videos to reply as well.)
To reply with a photo or video, the user taps the camera button while watching a story in the app. The user can then capture a photo or video and then add any decorative filters, stickers, and whatnot. Once the user hits “send,” he or she can continue to watch Stories (and continue to engage with constantly churning content).
Replies appear in the recipient’s Direct inbox, same as before. But photos and videos will disappear once viewed.
Instagram says the update is just “one of the ways we’re working to make Direct the best place to have fun, visual conversations.” But it also continues to position Instagram as a messaging app, albeit in a different vein from Facebook Messenger (fb) or even Twitter (twtr) direct messages.
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The latest Instagram Stories features are available for iOS and Android now.