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Facebook’s Instagram will now give users the option of sharing a photo or video privately with friends, instead of only giving you the option to share a photo with the world. Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom made the announcement Thursday at an event in New York.
The new feature is called Instagram Direct, reports Businessweek. It will be an icon on the main feed and will allow you to pick up to 15 people to share an image or video with exclusively. You can still post comments and like the photo, just like a typical Instagram post.
“It’s like gathering people around a photo, a moment, and being able to have a conversation about them,” Systrom told the media.
Wired notes that the announcement comes after Twitter recently said that users will be able to send Direct Messages with photos as well. However, Twitter’s new feature only allows sharing from one person to another.
The new Instagram feature is included in a new update released today. From now on, users will see an inbox logo next to the refresh button, which will give you access to private photos. When you take a picture and get ready to share it, you will be given the option of sharing it with the world or with friends you select.
The new feature also comes while Facebook is competing with startup Snapchat, but Systrom insists that the new Instagram feature is very different. “Snapchat has their own market and they are going after it in a really unique way,” he said. “The way we’ve done it is just very different.”