Users of Instagram who still miss the reverse-chronological feed might get the latest way to see the most recent pictures and videos from who they follow. Instagram has been internally observed prototyping a “Latest Posts” feature. It seems like a pop-up over the main feed and brings users to a special area showcasing the latest content from their respective networks.
Reverse Engineering helped
For now, it does not seem like a full-fledged “Most Recent” reverse-chronological feed option like what Facebook has done for its News Feed. However, if launched, Latest Posts will help satisfy users who want to double-check they haven’t missed anything or want to have an idea of what’s going on right now.
The prototype was spotted by Jane Manchun Wong, who is the master of reverse engineering who’s offered tips to TechCrunch on loads of latest features in development by different tech giants. She got the screenshots that are below from the code of Instagram’s Android app. “Welcome Back! Get caught up on the posts from [names of people you follow] and 9 more”, according to the pop-up that appears over the home screen. If users tap on “See Posts” instead of “Not Now”, they’re directed to a different screen displaying recent feed posts.
TechCrunch contacted Instagram for validation of the prototype, more details, and clarification on the working procedure of Latest Posts. The company was unable to respond before press time. However, it has often accepted the credibility of Wong’s findings, and few of the features have gone on to officially launch months later.
Back in the days around mid-2016, Instagram ditched a reverse-chronological feed displaying every post from people you follow in order of decency. Instead, Instagram forced each of its users to go through an algorithmic feed of what it thinks you are going to like best and rank the content based on who and what kind of stuff you interact with most. That instigated a significant backlash. Some users thought that they were missing some posts or discovered the mixed-up timestamps confusing. However, since algorithmic feeds tend to escalate engagement by confirming the first posts you watch are usually relevant, Instagram provided no way to switch back from the algorithm.
Previously, Instagram tried to support users have a satisfactory feeling when they’d seen all the posts of their network using a “You’re All Caught Up” insert in the feed if someone had scrolled through everything from the past 48 hours. Latest Posts could be helpful in another way to enable frequent Instagram users to make sure that they’re totally up to date.
That might allow people to close the app in confidence and resume their lives.
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