Instagram adds new features in Location and Hashtag Stories
Just a few days after launching its Snapchat like filters, Instagram returns with another new feature that is very similar to Snapchat. If you’ve been keeping up with their latest moves, you shouldn’t be too surprised. The photo/video sharing app has, for lack of a better word, copied several features of Snapchat in recent months. But, to give them credit, they have made the features a little better than what Snapchat has to offer. Like the title of Nas’ The Lost Tapes standout track, “No Ideas Original,” right?
The new feature is called Location Stories and it allows users to view Stories posted to a particular location.
For an example, say there is a concert at House of Blues Boston and you want to see what Stories people are posting. If you search that location, you will see all the Stories that were posted with a House of Blues Boston location sticker.
Along with Location Stories are Hashtag Stories, which basically work the same way. You can search a particular hashtag and see Stories that were posted utilizing that hashtag.
By adding a location sticker or hashtag to your story, there is the potential for it to appear in other users' Explore tab, who then have the ability to click on your username and follow you. On the other hand, if you don’t want your story to appear on the Explore tab, you can disable it by tapping the X on your Stories viewer list.
What do these new features mean? There is the potential to increase your following easier because there is a greater chance that other people will come across your profile through your Stories. In addition, the Instagram real-time experience is even greater. People can see what is going on at a location at a particular moment. Want to know if a bar is busy right now? Just search the location.
As for the Instagram vs. Snapchat battle, the former continues to lead the race. Instagram has made it hard for people to need to leave the app as it is becoming a one stop shop. From the recently added filters to Stories categorized by locations and hashtags, you can basically do everything on Instagram that you can do on Snapchat but better.
In the big scheme of things, Snapchat isn’t going anywhere but I do believe it’s going to keep losing market share. By adding a new feature or two, they can possibly slow it down. Let's see how Snapchat responds in the next few months. In the meantime, you can learn more about Location and Hashtag Stories on Instagram's blog.