Instagram 2019: Top Instagram updates and tools you are probably not familiar with

Instagram 2019: Top Instagram updates and tools you are probably not familiar with

Top Instagram updates and tools you are probably not familiar with

Since its launch in 2010, Instagram has gone through many updates and changes within the app. Instagram is always trying to reduce the app size and at the same time, it brings a lot of new features inside the app, which is a good thing.

The explore tab was first introduced in June 2012, that displays popular photos and videos related to your activities and interests on Instagram. In the beginning, Instagram only allowed users to post their content framed in a square (1:1 aspect ratio), but in 2015, this restriction was ended.

Then Instagram added messaging services, which we commonly know as DM or direct message.

Then it introduced Instagram stories, which became very popular among users. Through Instagram Stories, users can post photos and videos that vanish after 24 hours. At present, 400 million Instagram stories are shared every day. More and more features are being added by Instagram every year to improve their user interface.

So, let's take a quick glance at some important Instagram features you would love to use.

Note:- Not all accounts receive all updates. Different accounts receive updates at a different time period. You can report this issue to Instagram to get your required updates.

STORIES UPDATES

1. COUNTDOWN STICKER in stories

Recently, Instagram has introduced countdown stickers to stories which allow the user to add the countdown timer to their stories. They can create a countdown for special events like birthdays, anniversaries etc. I personally use this feature to tell my followers that I am going to live in a particular time.

It's very simple to use this feature.

STEP 1: Tap the sticker icon in the story mode
STEP 2: Choose the countdown sticker
STEP 3: Type an event name
STEP 4: Tap on digits and scroll through the wheels to set the end date
COUNTDOWN STICKER in stories, MILLIONAIRE ADDICTED
COUNTDOWN STICKER in stories

You can tap the colourful circle at the top to change the colour of your countdown. you can also resize, rotate and place your sticker anywhere on the screen before you share your story.

2. MUSIC

This is the latest update Instagram has received in 2019. Now users can add soundtracks to their stories. When you tap on sticker icon in your story mode, you can see a music icon. You can choose a specific song by searching according to your mood and genre. You can play the song to hear a review for your story before sharing. You can trim the favourite part of your music that fits your story.

NOTE: This is a testing feature of the app and is available only in a few selected countries, not all account has received this update yet.

3.CLOSE FRIENDS

CLOSE FRIENDS
CLOSE FRIENDS

Now you don't need to worry about your relatives that keep an eye on your Instagram activities.

You can choose a close friend feature of Instagram to share your stories with people you want. You can simply edit your close friend list any time. Just tap on "close friend" instead of "your story" before sharing your story.

4. NEW TITLE OPTION FOR INSTAGRAM LIVES

Are you using Instagram lives to keep your followers engaged? If so, then this update is for you.

Instagram has updated a new feature that will allow users to add titles to their live videos. These titles are valuable assets.

Your followers come into your live session, but unfortunately, most of the times they get confused when they first arrive. Having a title will tell your followers what the broadcast is all about. So, New title option for Instagram live will help you to retain your followers during your live sessions.

5. INSTAGRAM HIDES YOUR STORIES VIEWER LIST AFTER 24 HOURS

Viewer lists are now unavailable after 24 hours even on highlights.

INSTAGRAM HIDES YOUR STORIES VIEWER LIST AFTER 24 HOURS

Now you can only see the total number of people who viewed your highlights rather than a complete list of viewers.

POST UPDATES

1.CLOSE FRIENDS

Just like stories, you can also share your post to only selected people because the close friend feature is also available in post options. You can tap on "advanced settings" before clicking the "next" button at the time of posting and you will see two options- CLOSE FRIENDS and EDIT YOUR CLOSE FRIEND LIST. You can tap on "EDIT YOUR CLOSE FRIEND LIST" to edit your friends list.

2. IGTV PREVIEW IN MAIN FEED

IGTV is a standalone app that allows users to upload long form, vertical video content that can be accessed on Instagram.

Though it's a standalone application, obviously there is a lack of engagement over the Instagram network.

But now, Instagram had just taken a step further to increase the visibility of IGTV contents, allowing users to share previews of their IGTV videos in the main Instagram feeds.

IGTV PREVIEW IN MAIN FEED
IGTV PREVIEW IN MAIN FEED
Now you can share a one-minute preview of your IGTV videos when you upload it. Your followers will clearly see the prompt in their news feed. Also, Instagram allowing them to click and be taken directly to the full content.

Also read: What is IGTV videos and How to use it: Everything you need to know

DIRECT MESSAGE (DM) UPDATES

1. VOICE RECORDED MESSAGES

VOICE RECORDED MESSAGES, millionaire addicted
VOICE RECORDED MESSAGES

Just like WhatsApp and other messenger apps, Instagram has also introduced a voice recording option in its messaging service. You have to tap and hold the icon to record your voice and then just release your hold to send the voice record.

2. QUICK REPLY

QUICK REPLY
QUICK REPLY

This feature is only available for business accounts. In this feature, Instagram allows you to add a few replies to avoid typing the same responses again and again to different people. You can tap on the "+" icon. Tap on the "new quick reply" or "+" icon to add a reply to your choice. After adding a few replies, you can see a list of replies when you tap on quick reply. Simply tap your required reply and the reply will be sent to a person.

3. FILTERING YOUR DM's

FILTERING YOUR DM's
FILTERING YOUR DM's
If you receive tons of DM's like me, then this new update is for you. Now with just one tap of a button, you can filter your DM's and easily respond to your messages in a systematic way. 

PROFILE UPDATES

1. BIO EXCERPT

BIO EXCERPT
BIO EXCERPT

Now you don't have to scroll down to have a look of first 3 posts of any other account that have crafted bulky bios. Instagram has a new update, targeting the bios. They only show you the first two lines of the bio and give you the option to explore.

2. CLICKABLE HASHTAGS AND HANDLES

CLICKABLE HASHTAGS AND HANDLES, millionaire addicted
CLICKABLE HASHTAGS AND HANDLES

This update is very useful for those who want to promote their other accounts or pages and branded hashtags. You can add clickable hashtags and other handles in your bio by simply putting '#' and '@'  respectively before the words.

How to add hashtags and handles?
Step 1: Goto profile 
Step 2: Tap on 'Edit profile'
Step 3: Tap on the bio section
Step 4: Add hashtags and handles
Step 5: Tap Done and save 

3. SORTING FOLLOWERS

SORTING FOLLOWERS

This new update helps you to sort your following list. You can sort your following list by the latest or earliest date you followed. This update only gives a systematic representation.

Apart from these cool updates, Instagram provides you some more features which you should try.


1. ACTIVITY STATUS

Many people don't know that they can hide their activity on Instagram like photos they like, comment etc. This Instagram feature is somewhat like WhatsApp where you hide your last seen, profile photo and about. On enabling this feature, your followers, with which you have conversation/chat, cannot see when you were last active on Instagram.

To enable this setting, just go to profile and tap options (triple Dash icon), then tap settings, tap activity status and turn off.

2. TWO-FACTOR AUTHENTICATION

This Instagram feature is very helpful for security purpose. On setting up two-factor authentication, Instagram will ask you to enter a special login code sent to your registered phone number each time when someone tries to access your Instagram account from an unrecognized device. You will be able to access recovery codes provided by Instagram itself for your account if you have issues receiving a code.

Here's how you can turn on two-factor authentication-

Step 1
: Go to your profile and tap on the gear icon near the top right corner of the screen.
Step 2: In the Account section, tap on two-factor authentication.
Step 3: Tap the toggle next to "Require security code" and tap turn on when the confirmation window appears.
Step 4: If you have already confirmed phone number on your account, a text message will be sent to that number containing a security code that must be entered in the Instagram app. If you don’t have a confirmed phone number on your account, you’ll be asked to enter a phone number before the code can be sent.
Step 5: Once you receive a code, enter it on this screen.
Step 6: Tap “Done.”


These were few Instagram features and updates you must try to look cool. Apart from this, there are many features like hashtags in stories, location tags in stories, post archives, story archives, insights for business accounts etc. Many updates are under testing which are available only in selected countries.

Recommended: Create an effective Instagram Bio for the business account 

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