Breaking news: Instagram is testing a new vertical Instagram Stories format – and it could mean that some big changes are coming soon.
The new format lets users skip through their stories queue by performing a swiping motion, which is extremely similar to the TikTok experience we know and love.
This also explains why swipe up links were replaced by link stickers recently.
To see stories from the same person, users can still tap on the right-hand side of the screen to skip forwards, or tap on the left-hand side to track backwards.
And you can still long-press on screen to pause the story view.
But in order to see someone else’s story, users will need to swipe upwards. It’s a significant change to the browsing experience, and one that could hint at major changes to come on the app.
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Who Has Access to Instagram’s New Vertical Stories Format?
The new Instagram Stories vertical viewing experience is currently being tested with a large number of accounts in different countries.
Instagram has yet to confirm when this feature will be made available to all accounts, but the scale of the test group indicates that it could happen sooner, rather than later.
If this new format rolls out more widely, this could indicate that things are about to change a lot on Instagram.
Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, hinted recently that the team is focusing on a more “streamlined experience” in the app.
And Instagram is already testing a new, 60-second limit for Instagram Stories’ clips – bringing the stories format ever closer to Instagram Reels.
With all this in mind, having a single feed that brings together Instagram Stories, Feed videos, and Instagram Reels suddenly doesn’t feel too unlikely.
Watch this space!
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