Facebook, Instagram test feature to cross post stories in both apps

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Facebook is testing a new feature whereby users could watch their Instagram stories from within the main social networking app of choice. Though cross-posting of Instagram stories on Facebook has been active for quite some time, the new test integrates these stories directly in a way where users can check updates on one by logging into the other. 

Facebook has been attempting to encourage Instagram users to cross-post their own stories onto Facebook. The new test would allow users to know whether they're accessing a post on Facebook or Instagram based on the colour code on the profile picture, says a report published in The Verge. 

While Facebook stories would have the regular blue circles, those coming from Instagram will have pick or orange hues that come with the app icon. The latest test, if successful, could mean a significant expansion of Facebook's efforts to integrate with its two major acquisitions, viz., Instagram and WhatsApp. Currently, the feature is being tested on a small set of users. 

Behind the scenes though, nothing much is changing about who sees the stories. Those who are connected to you via Instagram and have additionally linked their account to Facebook, will be able to do so. 

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Of course, this begs the question as to why anyone would want to see the same story on two platforms, but Facebook thinks this is a good way to provide users with an option of alternative browsing. That is, you could check on Instagram or Facebook and still get to see what your network is up to. But there's more. Facebook isn't providing this as default setting. One has to opt into the setting to be able to view them on both platforms. 

Facebook makes it clear that those whom we do not follow on Instagram wouldn't be able to see the story you post on that platform on the other one. The test is currently being run on a limited basis for Facebook to acquire some feedback on the feature. The test also respects all privacy policies around the existing settings and reiterates that Instagram users have the option to keep their stories off Facebook, if they so desire. 

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The social networking giant had started integrating its chat systems for Instagram and Facebook Messenger last month. Users found a new update screen in their Instagram mobile app which said they had a new way to message on Instagram now and listed out features such as a new UI, additional emojis, a swipe-to-reply feature and options to chat with Facebook friends. 

Users clicking on the update got the Facebook Messenger logo on the right top of their Instagram account with the chat windows shifting colours between blue and purple during the scroll. However, the testing of this new feature did not allow Instagram users to message those on Facebook. 

These measures are part of Facebook's integration plans for its hugely popular apps, starting with cross-messaging across the Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp. Reports had indicated that the company was reworking the underlying infrastructure of these apps so that users could be on a single app while connecting with the others seamlessly.These changes are in line with what CEO Mark Zuckerberg said about creating end-to-end encryption across all products so that they could offer direct competition to Apple's iMessage.

(via) The Verge

Raj Narayan

A media veteran who turned a gadget lover fairly recently. An early adopter of Apple products, Raj has an insatiable curiosity for facts and figures which he puts to use in research. He engages in active sport and retreats to his farm during his spare time.