Instagram will be closing the doors on its standalone messaging app, Direct, within the next month.
A message confirming the planned closure is being displayed to users in the Direct for Instagram app, and was first spotted by social media industry commentator Matt Navarra in the Dutch version of the app, who posted the Tweet below:
Instagram is already killing its standalone Direct messaging app? @mosseri ? pic.twitter.com/sr0c90PzEcMay 15, 2019
If you use Direct for Instagram regularly and you're worried about losing your conversations, fear not; according to Cnet (opens in new tab) they're just "moving over to the dedicated Instagram app", where your direct messages would normally appear.
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A short lifespan
Instagram's standalone messaging app has been relatively short-lived, having only been launched in December 2017.
Much like Snapchat, the app opened your phone's camera upon launch, and
installing the app meant that your direct messaging inbox disappeared from the regular Instagram app and could only be accessed via Direct for Instagram.
So far Instagram hasn't responded to requests for comment, so we can only speculate as to why it's decided to cull the messaging app so early in its lifespan; perhaps users wanted all their Instagram-related activity to be in one app as opposed to two.
Either way, Instagram's foray into the world of instant messaging hasn't been as successful as that of its parent company: Facebook's Messenger app had 1.3 billion users worldwide (opens in new tab) as of April 2019, coming second only to WhatsApp, which boasts 1.6 billion.