Instagram Introduces Web Profiles
Despite all of its photo-editing bells and whistles (so. many. filters), the wildly popular photo-sharing app Instagram lacked one major component: web access. In response to widespread user feedback, the company recently introduced Instagram profiles on the web, giving users a new way to not only display their photos, but interact with other users, too.
Interested in checking it out? Head to instagram.com/[username]. If you don’t immediately see your profile, don’t worry. The feature is in the process of being rolled out to all users, so keep checking back—according to Instagram’s blog, the feature will be available for all users in a few days.
In the meantime, let’s take a look at the web profiles so you know what to expect.
Instagram Web Profiles: An Overview
Your Instagram web profile includes several elements–check out mine, pictured below. A selection of recently shared photographs is compiled to create a collage at the top of your profile, an image not dissimilar to a Facebook cover photo—clearly Facebook is exerting design influence as a result of the company’s purchase of Instagram.
Beneath your recently shared photos, you’ll see your Instagram profile photo, as well as your URL and a quick snapshot of your Instagram activity: photos taken, following and followers.
Below that you’ll be able to browse your Instagram library. Like Facebook’s Timeline, Instagram web profiles are divided by month so you can easily navigate to a particular event or image.
When you log in, you’ll be able to view and edit your profile. You can also like or leave comments on photos and navigate to other user profiles, too. One additional note? The visibility of your images on your web profile depends on your privacy settings. If you have your photos set to “public,” they’ll be visible on your profile, too. If your photos are private, only users to whom you’ve given access will be able to see your images when they’re logged in on the web.
The only functionality not currently included in the web profiles is the ability to upload Instagram photos directly through the web, as opposed to the app–and if feedback from the development team is any indication, this feature is not likely to be added anytime soon. According to the developers, “Instagram is focused on the production of photos from mobile devices so users are not currently able to upload from the web.”
In the scheme of new digital tools or enhanced functionality to existing platforms, the addition of Instagram web profiles isn’t necessarily life changing. That being said, we think it’s downright convenient—and makes sense not only from an accessibility standpoint, but also in encouraging users to explore other ways to interact with each other, as well as find new users to follow.
What’s your take on the new Instagram web profiles? A much needed addition? Or do you prefer to interact with the app solely through your mobile device?
Image by Luis Hernandez – D2k6.es via Creative Commons