BrandArena: Instagram Testing Direct Messages on the Web

Wednesday 13 February 2019

Instagram Testing Direct Messages on the Web

Are you one of those who would love to share direct messages on Instagram via web? If so, you may have your wish granted very soon. The social media platform is testing its direct message feature for the web on mobile and on the desktop, according to app researcher Jane Manchun Wong.

Wong revealed this via a tweet showing a screenshot of the feature.

The desktop experience on Instagram is a minimal, pared-down version of the mobile app that shows little more than the feed at the moment. There’s still no direct way to upload photos, and the service is slow to add new features.

Messaging is one of the top driver of engagement for social media apps. Facebook knows it very well, being one of the first social platforms to introduce a messaging feature, and the first to build a stand-alone app for it. Today Messenger is undoubtedly one of the most used messaging services.

There are multiple reasons why this shift to the web could be happening now. Instagram has built a standalone messaging app called Direct, which it began testing in six countries in 2017, and the move to the desktop could be a sign that messaging has taken on increased importance to the Instagram team.

The move could also have something to do with Facebook’s plans to consolidate Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram DMs into a single, unified platform.

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