Browsing through photos on instagram.com has always felt second rate to the experience one becomes accustomed to after using Instagram on mobile. This is because Instagram, like other players like Foursquare, has always been mobile first. And this has worked well so far. As of December last year, Instagram had 300 million active users monthly.
The service, acquired by Facebook for a billion bucks back in 2012, has grown and is now a the standard for sharing photos particularly among the young. Entire careers have sprung up thanks to the service that was once the preserve of iOS. It is not just a photo sharing hub, it is also the new home of emojis. As a result, it now attracts users from all walks of life. From college freshmen to professionals to corporates. In order to cater for the broad spectrum of users, changes to its web interface had to be made. Over this week and the coming one, users will be seeing a revamped instagram.com.
On the new Instagram website, photos on both the home timeline and the profiles are arranged in simple squares instead of the card interface that was there before. It is clean and makes sure your central focus is on the images themselves with no distractions whatsoever.
How relevant is the web to Instagram since it is mobile first? For a start, Instagram embeds on third party websites (like eeer techwez.com) were directly responsible for a staggering 4.7 billion views in the last one month alone. That ability to embed images in a new format has only been available in that last one month. Do your math.
A revamped web interface is not the only thing Instgram is pushing in its bid to keep its current users and attract even more. It has started sending “highlights” emails to users showcasing the best uploads/shares by those in their social circles as a means of reminding long time users to keep visiting.