After a long wait, Instagram is finally bringing direct messages to the web. Starting today, a small percentage of Instagram users from all over the world will get early access to heir DMs from Instagram’s website. This feature will be highly useful for businesses, influencers, and anyone else who sends lots of DMs to help them access the Direct Messages irrespective of their platform.
As mentioned by the company, today’s rollout is just a test for direct messages. A potential wide-scale rollout will be commenced anytime in future. As seen by some of the screenshots shared on different platforms, the direct messages feature looks similar to that of what we have seen on the mobile platform.
On the Instagram web, you can create new groups or start a chat with someone either from the DM screen or a profile page; you can also double-tap to like a message, share photos from the desktop, and see the total number of unread messages you have. You’ll be able to receive desktop DM notifications if you enable notifications for the entire Instagram site in your browser. Instagram says it’ll “continue to iterate” on this during the test.
Facebook has increasingly placed a focus on messaging over the past year. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told The New York Times last spring that “private messaging, groups, and Stories” were the “three fastest-growing areas of online communication.”
As we already know, Stories on Instagram is also accessible on the web. And now, with the rollout of direct messages feature on the web, the Instagram web is now fully functional as that on the mobile platform. Instagram now allows some of its users to access group chats and private messages from the browser, too, which aligns with what Zuckerberg said he and the company would prioritize.
Last year, Mark Zuckerberg said that the company is planning to allow users to send messages from any platform either be it Facebook, WhatsApp, or Instagram. However, we haven’t heard how the company plans to pull this feat off, but the browser could potentially play an important role if only to give users even more flexibility about where they have a conversation.
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