Instagram morphs into Snapchat with latest update, and everyone notices
Almost as soon as the photo-sharing app Instagram announced its latest update today, people started calling the new Instagram Stories feature what it is: "Snapchat."
Here's what the new Instagram Stories does: It allows people to share with followers photos and videos that have a short lifespan, disappearing after no more than 24 hours. Users can edit those photos and videos with different overlays and text. They can post multiple photos and videos to their to create a sort of slideshow known as their "story."
It lends itself to holding your phone vertically. There's swiping to the right or left involved. There's a circle at the bottom of the screen.
Here's what Snapchat already did: all of that.
Tech companies borrow features invented by other tech companies all the time, though. Hashtags were a Twitter thing, until they started working on Facebook, and Instagram, which was purchased by Facebook for $1 billion in 2012. Facebook tried to purchase Snapchat, too, for a reported $3 billion or more in 2013, but the startup turned the Mark Zuckerberg-run social network's offer down.
Now it seems like Instagram is taking aim at Snapchat, which, like itself, is favored by, and targeting, young Millennials and post-Millennials, who apparently have an aversion to posting things that are "permanent" (at least, until they click a button to delete them). Instagram's announcement says Stories will allow people to post throughout their day, without fear of "overposting," because Stories items won't appear in their timeline.
The Internet immediately started mocking Instagram Stories over the Snapchat similarities.
instagram & snapchat pic.twitter.com/ALNPuKdaoi— The Black DaVinci (@meechonmars) August 2, 2016
When Snapchat saw Instagram's update today. pic.twitter.com/9ndZn8LESy— RG (@redgaskell) August 2, 2016
One person nobody probably expected to agree, though, was Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom. According to news site Tech Crunch, Systrom didn't hesitate to tell reporter Josh Constine, "They deserve all the credit," when asked about Snapchat. “Just like Instagram deserves all the credit for bringing filters to the forefront. This isn’t about who invented something. This is about a format, and how you take it to a network and put your own spin on it."