Who doesn’t like all things new and shiny? And when it comes to Instagram, there are always new features to look forward to and have fun with. Be it a new sticker that gets the ball rolling or an important Account Insight update to keep track of your post analytics, these Instagram updates are the reason why this social media app evolved the way it did and why everyone you know, including yourself, is on Instagram.
Let’s take a look at the latest Instagram updates that you should know about as well as the top 8 updates that have rolled out in the past year and a half. You might want to take your smartphone out, for these are definitely worth giving a go.
Latest Instagram updates
First, let’s begin with something new and something hip. Below are the app updates that don’t just resolve a few issues that were plaguing users before but also ones that repurpose how you interact with the app.
Finally resolving an issue with the previous versions, the latest Instagram update brings back the ‘Select Multiple’ option that went missing from the screen that lets you select photos for a post.
Users complained non-stop about not being able to add multiple photos to the post which was most likely due to a bug before. Though there were definitely a few workarounds, bringing the ‘Select Multiple’ option back will now ensure ease of use and dispel confusion.
Hide Likes and View Counts
We are gregarious creatures, but our old ape-like brains are not used to processing how someone could get thousands of likes and the appreciation of their followers with as little as a selfie. There is little wonder, then, that many users feel discouraged or dejected when their content doesn’t do well.
Citing the importance of the overall mental health of its users, Instagram has added the option to hide likes and view counts for posts and videos as well as for your whole account to keep toxic vanity at bay. The option to do so for your whole account is found in Settings > Privacy > Posts.
This will hide the likes and view counts of posts that you see on your home feed. Additionally, you can also Hide like count on your posts. Just select a post, tap on the vertical ellipsis, and tap Hide Like Count.
With this setting turned on, in place of the usual like and view count, you will see the usernames of a few people who’ve liked the post along with the words ‘…and others’.
Two new ‘Following’ categories and a filter option
If you recently tapped on the list of people you’re Following, you would have found that there are now two new categories for the people that you’ve least interacted with and the ones that show up most in your feed.
These two categories are helpful additions that highlight the people that are close to you and the ones you’ve lost touch with over time.
Additionally, you will also find a “Sorted By” option that will let you filter people you follow by ‘Earliest Followed’ and ‘Latest Followed’ – a simple yet useful feature to easily find people you follow in the list.
Top 8 Instagram Updates in 2021 and 2020
Now, there have been more than a dozen Instagram updates in the last year and a half. Many of them introduced new features while others bettered existing ones. Here we take a look at the top Instagram updates of 2020 and 2021 that you must know about to get the most out of your Instagram experience.
Turn off audio and video on Lives
Not everyone is comfortable projecting themselves with their video and sound on. And now, you can now turn off your audio and video on Instagram Live streams. This is one of the more important updates, especially in the age of the pandemic when your friends are constantly asking you to go Live with them.
The options to mute audio and turn off the camera are available on the live broadcast screen so that others see nothing but your profile picture and hear nothing but pin drops.
This feature turns Instagram into something similar to chat rooms, and such an option is always a welcome one.
Recover Recently Deleted Posts and Stories
Deleted posts and stories that you wish you hadn’t? Well, now with a ‘Recently Deleted’ option in your Account Settings, you’ll be able to recover the ones from as far back as a month.
Here, every story and post (including videos, reels, and IGTV videos) will have a number attached to it, counting down the number of days before it is deleted for good. Want to recover one? Just tap on the post/story, go to the vertical ellipsis, and tap on “Restore”.
Business and Creator accounts rejoice, for there is now a Professional Dashboard that provides all the tools to keep you inspired, help turn your passion into a livelihood, and encourage business growth.
The Professional Dashboard, available just above your Profile bio section, tracks the performance of your recent activity, sets up saved replies, and even lets you partner up with other brands and creators for your next post. On top of that, you will also find some really handy tools and tips to guide and inspire you in your journey.
Instagram messages Vanish Mode
To bolster privacy, late last year Instagram released its Vanish mode – a feature which, when enabled, deletes your seen messages once you leave the chat. Of course, this mode works only if you and your chat buddy follow each other.
Vanish mode is also ridiculously easy to turn on. Just swipe up in a chat thread and the vanish mode will be enabled. Don’t worry about your chat buddy taking screenshots, you’ll be notified when they do. To disable Vanish mode, just swipe up in the chat thread again.
Instagram Stories have a lot of things going for it – filters, text, a great many stickers, and some fancy filters to break the monotony. But never before were they as impactful as they are now, many thanks to Music Stickers.
Having the ability to add soundtracks to your stories can make them instantly engaging and improve your influence. They’re also quite the cinch to use: While creating a story, tap on Stickers, choose the ‘Music’ sticker and add your song. You can select which (15-second) part of the song you want to add to your Story and even change the font appearance if the lyrics are available.
A year ago, Instagram gave users the ability to pin particular comments on a post. No more would you have to sift through the interminable list of comments to find the one that adds value to your post. This update gives the power back to businesses and creators in that they can evaluate the types of conversations and comments that fit well with their vision.
To pin a comment, tap on the post and find the comment that you want to pin. Then tap on the comment and tap on the pin icon in the toolbar above.
You can pin up to 3 comments and the people who commented will be notified of the same.
Access and Download your Profile Data
Just as Facebook lets you access and download your profile data, so too does Instagram nest this feature as well. If you’re concerned with data privacy, this handy little tool will let you see all your Instagram activities such as your photos, comments, likes, the type of content that you consume, your updates, and much more.
This will also give you some clarity as to why you’re seeing the content that you’re seeing in the Explore tab. To access and download your profile data, go to Settings>Security>Data and History.
Getting a link to download your profile information can take up to 48 hours, so patience is advised.
Last, but definitely not least, on our list is the Auto Caption sticker. As part of a recent update, this sticker transcribes speech to text in your Instagram stories. Viewers will now be able to know the contents of your story even if their sound is turned off.
To enable the sticker, search for and choose the blue ‘Captions’ sticker.
As soon as you select it, the auto-captions sticker will start working its magic. The size, color, and placement of the captions can all be changed, and the caption itself can be edited if certain words aren’t captioned properly. You can also add videos that are on your phone to the story and apply the auto-captions sticker to them. Just make sure the video story is no more than 15 seconds long.
App updates don’t always just fix bugs and resolve previous issues. They are a treasure chest that deals out goodies every few weeks and keeps things interesting, for both the personal as well as the professional user. These Instagram updates aren’t just good to know about; you should be checking them out right now.