When the Instagram mobile app was introduced back in 2006, it was a big success for a number of reasons. First: it’s the easiest way to produce and share photos from your life with family and friends, second: It requires less effort and more creativity, and third: the photos are aesthetically pleasing thus a mega-esteem booster to its users. Instagram has made words like “selfie” and “tbt (or throwback thursday)” a part of your everyday vernacular with honorable mention going to those sun-dewy filtered brunch photos. Now, Instagram has introduced Instagram Direct. This feature will allow users to share private photos and videos with select friends almost akin to Vine and Snapchat save for a few extra details. Photos and videos that you receive from a user you follow will appear immediately, while you have the option to decline the requests from users you don’t follow.
“When you open Instagram, you’ll now see a new icon in the top right corner of your home feed. Tap it to open your inbox where you’ll see photos and videos that people have sent to you. To send a photo or video to specific people, tap the camera button to enter the same simple photo or video capture and editing screens. At the top of the share screen, you’ll see the option to share with your followers (“Followers”) or to send to specific people (“Direct”). To send using Direct, tap the names of the people you want to send your photo or video to, write your caption, tap “send” and you’re done.” [source]
Instagram's messaging services hopes to offer something unique with the company boasting almost 80 million users logging in and uploading everyday. However, Instagram does face competition with twitter’s new and improved direct messaging service, and facebook’s messenger and Chat Heads. Other problems possibly facing the success of Instagram Direct is the sheer break in the userbase equilibrium. Users are accustomed to the ol’ click-post-like routine, and Instagram Direct strays a bit too far from the normalcy of this pattern. Techcrunch says the update is, ‘too different from Instagram, and not different enough from everything else.”
Despite all of this Instagram remains the prime location to share photos. Instagram Direct stands to distinguish itself from the pack by simply promoting the use of images as a way of communicating overall. The social network meets the camera with less limitations and more privacy. Instagram Direct makes mobile messaging into big business but revenue still depends on interest- whether publicly or privately.