Likely inspired by its wildly successful Stories format, Instagram is testing a new interface elsewhere across the app that would enable users to tap through posts rather than scroll.
Instagram confirmed to Techcrunch that it is testing the capability within the ‘Explore’ section of the app, which features Instagram-curated posts that are customized for every user based on the people they follow or posts that they have previously liked. The company said that it is “always testing ways to improve the experience on Instagram,” but clarified that it is not actively considering bringing the feature to the main feed. The test was first spotted by Twitter user Suprateek Bose (see below).
Techcrunch notes that the tap feature is mostly useful for photo posts, given that clips within the ‘Videos You Might Like’ section of Explore already auto-advance as soon as they’re done playing.
While scrolling may seem breezy enough to most, Techcrunch notes that “big thumbstrokes” on a mobile device “can get tiring after awhile” — adding that the tap feature also means that posts are available for fullscreen view in an instant (rather than the intervals that appear between posts while scrolling). Tapping would also presumably make it easier for users to pass through ads — though Instagram doesn’t display ads within the Explore tab as of yet.
Inception of Stories & Posts in Instagram.
— Suprateek Bose (@SupraBo_) October 11, 2018