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Instagram Direct upgrades to corner messaging market

Instagram Direct upgrades to corner messaging market

Instagram has revamped its Direct feature, aiming to turn the photo messaging system into a real alternative to Twitter DMs and even dedicated IM apps. The new Instagram Direct - available in v7.5 of the app for both iOS and Android - supports threaded messages, a much-requested feature for common conversations, in addition to renaming support for group chat.

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Instagram stops being a square, supports landscape & vertical photos

Instagram stops being a square, supports landscape & vertical photos

Instagram has finally gotten with the times and dropped its requirement that photos be in a square format. The social network has updated both its iOS and Android apps and now allows users to post photos in landscape and vertical orientations, in addition to the classic square. The same size change is applied to videos too. This will likely be a welcome change to Instagram users, who for years already have been taking photos and video on devices with rectangular screens.

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Instagram for Android has a new edit screen

Instagram for Android has a new edit screen

If you use Instagram on Android, you may be seeing a new edit screen that speeds up the sharing process (and if you're not, try updating the app - some users have had luck doing this). Some users are seeing a new so-called quick edit screen that reduces the editing and sharing process to a single screen. The screen allows those who want the more expansive process to use it, but for everyone else, filtering is reduced to swiping right and left.

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Forever 21 shows Instagram on giant screen made of thread

Forever 21 shows Instagram on giant screen made of thread

What would be the best way to display Instagram posts to a large crowd? Your immediate and of course logically expected answer would be a large LCD screen or something like it. Fashion retailer Forever 21 naturally won't settle for something so plain, so conventional, so boring. Hiring the expertise of rapid product company BREAKFAST, Forever 21 setup what could be the world's first, and probably last, giant screeen that uses not LCDs or even LEDs to show content. It uses nothing than colorful threads for that same purpose.

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Instagram adds web search

Instagram adds web search

Instagram has rolled out its boosted search support to the browser, having improved the Discovery tab of its mobile apps last month. The updated search now hunts through hashtags, users' accounts, and general terms for those times you'd rather go browsing on the desktop rather than fiddling with your phone. However, it's not quite so full-featured as what the mobile app offers.

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Chris Pratt brings Jurassic World LEGO on world tour

Chris Pratt brings Jurassic World LEGO on world tour

Chris Pratt brings LEGO minifigure version of his Jurassic Park character Owen with on a world PR tour for the film. In true "I have to travel by myself so I'm bringing toys" fashion, actor Chris Pratt has brought his LEGO self with him as he hits a worldwide publicity tour for the film Jurassic World. Here you'll see Pratt hit several major cities around the world with his LEGO minifigure riding a velociraptor, just slightly unlike the actual film. Hilarity ensues, good times are had.

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Canon PIXMA MG3620 prints straight from Instagram

Canon PIXMA MG3620 prints straight from Instagram

Canon has a new PIXMA printer and it’s the first one that can print directly from Instagram accounts. This gives mobile photographers with a fondness for printed photographs a way to print out their favorite Instagram shots without having to use their laptop or third-party software. It’s the Canon PIXMA MG3620 Wireless Inkjet all-in-one printer, and it works in conjunction with Canon's mobile PRINT app. If Instagram isn't your cup of tea, the printer and app are also compatible with Facebook, Twitter, Evernote, and a bunch of other services.

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Instagram now storing higher resolution photos

Instagram now storing higher resolution photos

Good news for Instagram fans, or just users who are tired of the social network's small resolution for displaying photos: the service is now storing images at a size of 1080 x 1080 pixels, a big increase over the previous 640 x 640 resolution. Unfortunately, both the mobiles apps and Instagram's website are still displaying photos at the smaller size by default, but it was discovered that the larger sizes can still be found by playing around with the web view's source code.

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Instagram search supercharged with new Explore page

Instagram search supercharged with new Explore page

Instagram has introduced a revamped Explore page and improved search, enabling users to more easily find and explore content uploaded to the service. Instagram says these are “major updates”, and will make it easier for users to find trending content, such as videos of popular recent events. The trends show up in real time, but there are also curated collections based on topic, making it easier to explore what is on the service and narrow down content based on interest.

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Instagram running far more in-stream ads soon

Instagram running far more in-stream ads soon

Instagram announces plans to expand advertising on their photo-based social networking ecosystem. This will be the most major update to the Instagram ads system since it was launched one year and a half ago. In that time Instagram has "become a powerful mobile platform for advertisers," according to the company itself, and as of today they'll be taking steps to "make Instagram ads available to businesses of all types and sizes." So hold on to your shutter buttons, you're going to be seeing all sorts of content from users you never followed in the stream you never check.

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Instagram starts sending Highlights emails to draw users in

Instagram starts sending Highlights emails to draw users in

This sort of this isn't new, as both Facebook and Twitter have been doing it for some time now, and the fact that it's owned by Facebook means it was inevitable, but photo-sharing social network Instagram has finally started sending emails to users that attempt to draw them back to the service. Titled "Highlights," the emails are the typical "recent activity you may have missed" fare, featuring a selection of the most popular photos shared by users you follow.

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Layout from Instagram arrives on Android

Layout from Instagram arrives on Android

Instagram introduced its “Layout” collage photo app for iOS back in late March, and now Android users are finally able to enjoy it. As of today, Android users can download Layout from the Google Play Store and remix their photos into collages of various sizes and arrangements (up to 9 photos). In order to use it, though, you’ll need to be running Android 4.1 or higher. It’s not required to sign up or have an account to use the app, however.

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