Instagram rolls out new AR effects, Stories features and Explore redesign

Steve Phelps
May 2, 2018

At today's F8 develper conference in San Francsico, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that Instagram is now testing a built-in video chat feature that will roll out globally in the next few weeks.

Instagram is getting group video calls for the first time, and you'll also have access to AR camera effects for both photos and videos.

Starting today, Spotify users can display a song, album, or playlist on their Instagram Stories by simply clicking the "share" option within the Spotify app.

In other Instagram news, the company is also making it easier for you to share content from other apps. After that, you can post the final product as a Story or send it to friends as a Direct message. However, it'll work like other video chat apps in that you'll tap a video chat icon to join in small group conversations.

Instagram will also soon be rolling out a redesigned Explore page organized around topic channels like "animals, ' 'photography" and 'architecture'.

Facebook's AR Studio is now allowing for the same custom AR filters to be built for the Instagram platform. Now Instagram seems to be on a roll while it is now set to launch not just one but a total of five new features in the application.

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We're building a feature for dating and relationships within the Facebook app. People already use Facebook to meet new people, and we want to make that experience better.

Recent, Instagram announced that soon users will be able to store their data just like Facebook. First and foremost is video calling, which is now in a testing phase and will roll out globally in the coming months. This will allow third-party entities to create new experiences, from text styles, stickers, and face filters.

If you're using an iOS device, you don't even need a third-party editing app, because you can simply drag the image or video left or right to crop it down to the ideal size.

Oh, and stickers are coming if you're interested in that sort of thing.

While this new wing of the Facebook platform is opening to all developers, only approved partners that go through a review process like the three mentioned will have attribution watermarks added to the shares.

Instagram Live fans will be able to have direct private video chats now, too.

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