Instagram is bringing more features to users who don’t have a quick enough connection to use the app.
Instagram Stories are going beyond the app — on Thursday, August 31, Instagram announced that the popular Stories feature will soon be on the mobile website.
Stories allows users to post several short video clips of their day, providing friends with a brief visual breakdown of the day’s happenings. The feature, which launched a year ago, was only available inside Instagram’s app. Now, the social platform is bringing the feature to the mobile web.
Instagram Stories still aren’t accessible on a desktop computer, but users can login to their account on a mobile browser and will soon see those familiar Stories circles at the top of the screen. Instagram says the feature is rolling out globally in the next few weeks. That update will be followed by the ability to actually add to a Story without the app, an update the company says is coming in the next few months.
Instagram Stories now has over 250 million people using the feature every day. While the concept was originally a Snapchat option, Instagram’s version quickly gained more users than the original.
Instagram has been steadily improving its mobile site this year, adding the ability to post a photo and use the Explore tab in May. The platform has long stuck to a mobile-first, instant sharing philosophy, so while the features are available from a web browser, features like the photo upload, and now, Stories, are only available from browsers on a mobile device.
“Stories has quickly become an important part of the Instagram experience — over 250 million people use it every day to see what their friends are doing in the moment,” the official blog post reads. “Now we’re excited to bring stories to people who use Instagram on the web.”
Instagram’s expanded mobile website allows users with slower networks to access the platform’s biggest features, particularly in high-population but low-tech countries such as India and parts of Africa. While viewing posts and Stories and sharing a photo are accessible with the mobile website, features like messaging and adding videos still require the app.
Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, however, doesn’t have the same mobile-first idea — Facebook began testing Stories on desktop browsers last month. While Facebook hasn’t shared recent numbers, the feature is thought to lack Instagram Stories’ popularity.