Instagram Updates & Changes

You may have noticed a few updates across social media, especially on Instagram, recently. We’re rounding up all the big changes right here so you know what to expect if you haven’t received the news yet!

Let’s jump right in...

1. Instagram Reels

Previously, only some users would have mysterious access to 60-second reels. Now, everyone is finally being upgraded! If you haven’t yet, it’s coming. But this update comes after TikTok expanded its length to 3 minutes.

2. Teenager Usage

Instagram announced a new measure to ensure teens safety on the platform. New users who join that are under 16 (in the US) will have a private account as a default. They’ll be able to change this, but originally, the default was a public account.

For anyone under 16 who already has an Instagram account, they’ll receive a notification that explains the benefits of a private account. “We'll still give young people the choice to switch to a public account or keep their current account public if they wish,” Instagram says in a blog.

3. Story Links

If you have 10k followers or more on Instagram, you have/had access to the “swipe up” link. There would be a link icon at the top of your Instagram story before posting, to add a link, and users would swipe up on their phone screen to access.

Now, those links have been transferred to a Story Sticker. This feature is still only available to accounts with 10k followers and higher, but we have a theory it’ll be rolled out to all or most accounts in 2022.

4. Instagram Story Length

Instagram stories has another new feature. Originally, and for a long time, a single Instagram story had a view time of 15 seconds (although for longer videos, it would just break it up into 15 second segments that played as if it was a full video), then it would move straight on to the next story on your feed, or the next account.

Now, a single Instagram story just loops back around to the beginning, and doesn’t go straight to the next story until you tap the screen.

To pause an Instagram story, you’d originally have to hold down the screen (although you can still do that), but now, it’ll just replay if you want to go back and watch it again.<