@Instagram on Instagram

Instagram added Reels on August 2020

Instagram is obsessed with updating

December 11, 2020

When an app is as successful as Instagram changes are bound to occur. However, over the past four years, Instagram has been consistently updating in an attempt to compete with other social media platforms. When it comes to people’s thoughts on these changes, there seems to be a difference of opinion.

In Instagram’s earlier years, their concept was both simple and effective. People would share photos along with captions so that their followers could interact with their content. Although these aspects of the app have remained intact, so much change has taken place as well. Instagram has added Stories, IGTV, Reels, and a Shopping feature on their app. Whenever a new competitor arises, Instagram’s strategy is to replicate whatever the competitor is doing. Stories were created to compete with Snapchat and recently, Instagram Reels was added to compete with TikTok. Many users have noticed this trend and have expressed their opinions on these changes.

Much outrage ensued when Instagram replaced its activity tab with a brand new shopping tab this November. Instagram users who have been on the app for years complain that the app is not staying true to its original purpose. King student Raifa Sarwar explains, “Nobody really knows what Instagram is trying to be anymore. At first, it used to be a more user-friendly version of Facebook, but having all these unnecessary and clearly copied features makes the platform look less desirable.”

I’m gonna hope the CEO of Instagram isn’t going to ban my account for saying all of this.

— Raifa Sarwar

Additionally, there have been complaints that with all the new updates, Instagram appears unorganized. Features such as Instagram Reels have taken over space on the app that once had a simpler layout. “They keep trying to make so many changes and [the app] just feels messy now.” Raifa later jokes, “I’m gonna hope the CEO of Instagram isn’t going to ban my account for saying all of this.”

On the other end of the spectrum, some users view Instagram’s updates in a more positive light. For business owners, Instagram now serves as a platform that they can use to promote their businesses with ease. When people see a picture of something they wish to purchase, they can easily see all the information they need on the app rather than frantically search for it on Google. Over the years Instagram has evolved dramatically. Although the changes have been the source of much outrage, Instagram has far more range and potential today than it did ten or even five years ago.

As a company, Instagram must come up with new updates to keep users interested. As innovative competitors such as TikTok gain popularity, the fight to remain relevant will only become more difficult.

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