Instagram has a new app in testing and it’s going to take direct messages to its next level.

Direct from Instagram for Android and iOS brings in all the contacts users already have on Instagram and allows them to send Stories-style pictures with exclusive filters, tools and Boomerang built-in. Users can also take the pictures they receive from friends and “remix” them with new filters and editing.

The Verge reports that six countries are in the beta round: Chile, Israel, Italy, Portgual, Turkey and Uruguay. The messaging feature on the Instagram app will be removed — instead, swiping to the right side of the main feed will bring the user to Direct. Direct also allows users to swipe left to move back to Instagram.

“We want Instagram to be a place for all of your moments, and private sharing with close friends is an important part of that,” said Hemal Shah, a product manager.”

There’s a “bleep” filter that randomly redacts users’ speech and blur their mouths, funny enough, though with this private exchange, there will be plenty of content that will be “un-bleeped.” It’ll be interesting to see how refined the security profile will be from before.

The Facebook-owned social media platform is taking a different approach to the integrated one that Snapchat has had. The separation allows Instagram to develop new plug-ins, bots and transactional triggers as Facebook has with Facebook Messenger.




Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.

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