Instagram tests standalone messaging app called Direct

Instagram is reportedly separating Direct messages into its own separate, Snapchat-like app

After starting out as a simple way for sharing photos with friends, family, and random followers, Instagram has grown into a fairly bloated app these days. "We can push the boundaries to create the fastest and most creative space for private sharing when Direct is a camera-first, standalone app".

Opening Direct would directly be taking you to the camera to persuade one in making and sharing content.

As The Verge reports, the rollout today is just a test, launching in only six countries: Chile, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Turkey, and Uruguay. The move would mirror the actions of its parent company Facebook, which removed messaging from the core Facebook app in 2014 and replaced the feature with the standalone Facebook Messenger app.

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When users install the new Direct app, Instagram will automatically stop displaying chats; a swipe to the left will present you with a swift animation that brings you straight into Direct, while doing the same from Direct's inbox will send you back to Instagram. The app itself sounds pretty barebones, but the transition Instagram's built between the two sounds incredibly sleek.

The thing that stands out the most is the camera, which is the first thing that will greet users when they open the Direct app.

In case, Instagram launched Direct globally, for which no current timeline has been given so far, Facebook would become an owner of the third famous messaging tool alongside WhatsApp and Messenger. Direct comes with three sections: the inbox, the camera and the profile screen. If users don't actually want to take a photo in the Direct app, they could simply swipe down from the top and start typing a message. As of April 2017, Instagram Direct, still married to the Instagram app, had around 375 million active monthly users. The direct messaging feature is removed from Instagram once Direct is downloaded, but you can easily access it by swiping once again to the left in Instagram to see the Direct logo and then jump right to it. Now it has over 1.3 billion.

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