Instagram Considering Shift to Full Screen TikTok-Esque UI


It looks like Instagram is considering a major shift in its user interface and, to absolutely no one’s surprise, it is allegedly inspired by competitor TikTok’s now-familiar guise.

person holding black android smartphone
A person holding black android smartphone with the TikTok interface open on screen. Photo by Aaron Weiss

What distinguishes Instagram’s current UI from TikTok’s? It all boils down to how content is presented with the former opting for a sequential post style and the latter using a full-screen, immersive experience that hones in specifically on the current content being viewed and nothing else. It is this experience that Meta is testing out on their crown jewel and which, if approved, would be perhaps the largest change to Instagram’s presentation style since the app debuted.

It’s part of a series of moves to make Instagram more appealing to the crowd that uses TikTok and it’s not even the biggest mentioned by Meta. We brought you news some time back that the company was rethinking its content algorithm for both Facebook and Instagram. This could be part of that larger rethink. Of course, let’s not forget the broader rebranding to Meta last year and the concomitant declaration of a shift to the “metaverse” in terms of future strategy. How any of this fits in with what Instagram is trying to do right now is anyone’s guess. What we do know is that there is a kind of spiritual tug of war between Instagram’s penchant for video and photography and TikTok’s more performative content.

Essentially, some people worry that Instagram might not be the place for its traditional content moving forward but, time and time again, the company has assured us that, amidst all of this change, some things will remain the same and that photography and videography have a home on Instagram. Now, whether it is worth our time to showcase that or not is another question entirely.

What do you think of TikTok’s growing influence on Instagram and other photography/videography social media apps? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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About Author

Kehl is our staff photography news writer since 2017 and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here and follow him on Insta.

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