Instagram has updated its application with two new features for its integrated Direct Messaging platform: compatibility for landscape and portrait images, and link sharing.
We know, we know. It isn’t the most interesting update in the world, so why are we covering it? Well, the added support for links is a significant step in Instagram’s plan to becoming your go-to messaging platform.
Chances are, you send links — whether they point to an address, phone number or web page — on a daily basis, and you expect pressing one to trigger a response. After all, nobody likes copying a URL into a browser.
Prior to today, that’s exactly what you had to do when you received a Direct Message with a link. But if there’s one thing to know (and apparently Instagram now knows it) about building an instant messaging service, it’s that the most convenient ones tend to succeed.
Instagram Direct is about as convenient as a messaging service can be
Instagram Direct already has a lot going for it. Not only has it ripped self-destructing messages from Snapchat, it’s also cloned read receipts from WhatsApp and has a baked in social network. That’s about as convenient as a messaging service can be.
Whether Instagram Direct will be able to win over any of WhatsApp’s 1.2 billion users is another story, though.