A new Instagram test would make the app look even more like TikTok. According to TechCrunch, Instagram is experimenting with full-screen vertical home feeds. Upon opening the Instagram app, users immediately see vertical content meant to “bring video more front and center.” Instagram head Adam Mosseri confirmed the test in a video posted to Twitter, saying taller photos and videos would begin appearing in some feeds.
An image shared by Instagram shows a home feed taken up by a full-screen post with comments, captions, likes, and other features placed on top of the post instead of below. Though the Stories bar isn’t present at the top of the screen in the image, Seine Kim, a Meta spokesperson, says that view shows the home feed once users start scrolling and that Stories will still be accessible at the top of their screen. Search, Reels, shopping, and a user’s own profile are still accessible via buttons at the bottom of the screen. Notifications, messages, and new post features remain at the top, along with the ability to switch between accounts.
Kim says still images and video posts will also be incorporated into the full-screen feed.
Instagram’s choice to test feeds focused on immersive video isn’t exactly a surprise. The company has heavily pushed short-form video to creators and users, offering cash bonuses to creators making top Reels. And it would very much like it if you stopped reposting TikToks to the platform. In late April, Mosseri said the platform would change its ranking algorithm to reward “original” content over reposted content. And the platform has been investing in creator tools to siphon original content away from its competitors: Instagram began testing Templates in late April, allowing creators to use existing Reels formats on their own videos.
Update May 3rd 4:55PM ET: Updated to include mention of a video by Mosseri talking about the test.