Instagram is testing a standalone Direct messaging app

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The new stand-alone app for Instagram messaging is called Direct, and is launching today in a handful of smaller markets (Chile, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Turkey, and Uruguay). Although the fact is that this is its officially test only and not a final run through, Instagram's logistic strategy for constructing the Direct app is that private messaging can never be a best-in-class experience when it lives inside an app meant for public broadcasting. Apparently if you keep swiping left from your inbox, you see the Instagram logo and are then sent to the Instagram app. Direct is a new Instagram companion app to send and receive messages. Also important to note that installing Direct will remove the inbox feature from your Instagram.

By expanding Direct out of Instagram, the firm will require you to install two different apps for its service.

In anticipation of this, the Facebook-owned app has been trialling Shopping on Instagram over the previous year in the U.S., and is planning on rolling out the feature to more countries in 2018. "We can push the boundaries to create the fastest and most creative space for private sharing when Direct is a camera-first, standalone app", an Instagram Program Manager told The Verge. Also, the new app just seems really cool.

When described that way, Direct makes more sense.

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Focused on image sharing, Instagram Direct opens directly to the camera so sharing can be easier than ever before. While photos are encouraged, you're not limited to using them. You can take a photo or video with the front and rear cameras, apply face filters and masks, and even write text. None of them are offered on Instagram right now, and they're all just fun and silly, like one that replaces your mouth with a large, clown-like mouth. In January, TechCrunch reported that the launch of Instagram Stories had resulted in lower usage of Snapchat Stories.

Well, get ready for the sequel, as the same thing is about to happen with Instagram.

While you can check out Instagram Direct's app page on Google Play, you will most likely not be able to download it quite yet. In third place is Chinese messaging app QQ Mobile.

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