Despite being an online service, Instagram is about to make life much easier for users suffering internet woes with the introduction of a new offline mode.
At Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference, Facebook-owned Instagram announced that most of its features would now work without an internet connection on Android. That’s good news, as Android holds an overwhelming majority market share for smartphones around the world. Instagram is also “exploring” an iOS version, however.
So how exactly will it work? Well, as TechCrunch reports, Instagram users will be able to see previously loaded content on their feeds if they’re offline. You’ll also be able to view people’s profiles if they’ve been loaded before – but it will only display the content that was there last time.
But what’s really useful is that if you like photos or videos, save media to your profile, leave comments or unfollow people, they’ll all be enacted as soon as you reconnect. This means you won’t end up writing a lengthy comment, only to find that it never posted because you didn’t realise the internet was down.
The move is likely a ploy to better serve the developing world, where access to internet can be sparse or expensive (or both). Facebook has made plenty such moves in the fast, including developing Facebook Lite, which is a low-data version of the app that loads much faster on slow internet speeds.
Instagram launched back in October 2010, and was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion less than two years later. The image-sharing service now has over 600 million monthly active users globally, which is a huge leap from the 90 million that were using the service at the beginning of 2013.