Details about the app have emerged from leaked marketing slides shared by Lia Haberman in her ICYMI Substack newsletter.
Although the app doesn't have a separate name yet, it is referred to as "Instagram's new text-based app for conversations" or codenamed P92 or Barcelona. Users will be able to log in using their existing Instagram username and password, and their followers, handle, bio, and verification will automatically transfer over.
The app will feature a feed similar to Instagram, but with a focus on text-based posts. Users will have the ability to create posts of up to 500 characters and can attach links, photos, and videos. The leaked marketing slide showcases two screenshots, indicating that the app will combine the visual appeal of Instagram with the concise nature of Twitter.
One notable aspect of the new app is its emphasis on moderation and user control. Instagram will provide users with settings to manage who can reply to their posts and mention their account. Additionally, any accounts that have been blocked on Instagram will carry over to the text-based app.
A significant feature of the app is its compatibility with other platforms, particularly Mastodon. According to the leaked slide, users on other compatible apps will be able to search for, follow, and interact with profiles and content from the Instagram text app. This integration could provide a decentralized aspect to the new platform, expanding its reach beyond just the Instagram ecosystem.
If the app is widely released, it has the potential to attract a large user base, capitalizing on the growing discontent with Twitter's ongoing challenges. While alternatives like Mastodon and Bluesky have gained some traction, the introduction of a text-based Instagram app would offer a seamless transition for users who already have established followings on the platform.
Meta declined to comment on the leaked information. In a previous statement to Platformer in March, Meta mentioned its exploration of a decentralized social network for sharing text updates, envisioning a space where creators and public figures can share timely updates about their interests.
The launch of the new text-based app will undoubtedly add an exciting dynamic to the social media landscape, with users eagerly anticipating its release and the potential to experience a Twitter-like environment on Instagram's familiar platform.