Instagram is attempting to become more than just a video and photography network. Today the Facebook-owned company added a messaging feature called Instagram Direct to the popular app, which also allows people to send private photos/videos. According to techcrunch.com:
“Today at a press event in New York, Instagram founder Kevin Systrom has announced that the photo-sharing service is introducing private photo-sharing and messaging. The feature is called Instagram Direct.
“Instagram has always been a mostly public social network, with a broadcast structure instead of connections based on mutual friendship, like Facebook. The introduction of Instagram Direct marks a new phase for the company. Now, users who follow each other will be able to send each other private chat-like messages, which can include photos or videos (of course). Previously, users have only been able to like or publicly comment on pictures.”
The feature is seamlessly built into the application. Once users take a photo/video they will now get a tab for followers and one for direct. They can then select the direct tab and choose up to 15 people they would like to share the content with. People receiving a direct Instagram get a notification, and from there a private conversation can take place.
Instagram Direct is a great way for the company to drive more user engagement, which is something the company has been striving to do to make itself worth the billion-dollar valuation Facebook paid for it.
Check out the Instagram Direct introduction video below: