Instagram is working on a dedicated messaging app.
This statement was made in reference to Instagram's current process of testing a standalone app for private messages just like the inbox, called Direct, an initial step probably towards dismissing the messaging features from the basic app. Alonside these changes, Instagram also recently launched the Stories Highlights and Stories Archive.
The reason for the split is the notion that private messaging does not fit comfortably within an app which is designed for broadcasting images and messages publicly. The Verge appears to confirm that scenario, citing Instagram Product Manager Hemal Shah as saying that the ephemeral nature of Direct Messages is a better fit for a standalone app than an attachment to a completely public social media platform. "We can push the boundaries to create the fastest and most creative space for private sharing when Direct is a camera-first, standalone app".
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Instagram has not announced how long the tests will last and when it expects Direct to be rolled out to the rest of the world. Direct also ships with four exclusive filters and is ultimately seeking to grow its user base even more by providing people with a more focused experience, albeit one that's still deeply integrated into Instagram. Opening the app, you will see camera similar to Snapchat. This is similar to how Snapchat opens, which is a way to encourage users to start taking and sharing photos.
Instagram wasn't immediately available for comment. All you have to do is swipe left once you are in the Direct inbox to reveal Instagram icon which will direct you to the Instagram app. Once these apps are separated, the same can be said about swiping to the right in the main Instagram app. To recall, Facebook forced users to install Messenger app to chat with friends.
Well, get ready for the sequel, as the same thing is about to happen with Instagram. Thus, Facebook now has three individual messaging apps - WhatsApp, Messenger and Direct.