Now, Instagram is testing Snapchat-like 'self-disappearing' messages
After Stories, Instagram is copying another highly-celebrated feature from Snapchat- ephemeral or self-disappearing text messages. The Facebook-owned company has prototyped the capability and is testing it internally as part of an effort to let users have more of those rapid-fire and silly chats on the photo-sharing service. With all these copying and re-copying, the tech companies have gone bankrupt, ideas-wise. Indeed a sad world!
Just recently, popular reverse engineering specialist Jane Manchun Wong took to Twitter to reveal Instagram's work on self-destructing messages. She discovered the feature as a dedicated mode with the title of "speak no evil" emoji while digging into the code of Instagram's latest release for Android. Later, the engineer was also able to enable the mode, demonstrate how it works at the moment.
Currently, the disappearing message mode looks pretty basic, but the end-goal appears clear: allowing a free, independent messaging experience. According to a video shared by Wong, enabling the new feature would let you chat with one or more friends and have all the messages in that conversation deleted as and when everyone involved has seen them and closed the chat window, like Snapchat.
Instagram is working on “🙊 mode” where messages disappear— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) March 19, 2020
It seems to be in an early barebone version but I tried my best to demonstrate how it might work pic.twitter.com/ZrUZZj0TWo
Following Wong's report, an Instagram spokesperson confirmed the development of the feature but said it is only being tested internally. "We are always exploring new features to improve your messaging experience. This feature is still in early development and not testing externally," the company said without indicating when or if it might go ahead with the official launch.
The testing of the new feature is going on in conjunction with several other capabilities, including a new animated like reaction for DMs and the ability to set nicknames for chats. However, it is worth noting that not all the prototyped features land in the final version; some are discarded in the testing phase (depending on the feedback).
The development comes as companies continue to adopt Snapchat-popularized ephemeral content for their apps. Twitter and LinkedIn recently announced the plan to bring self-disappearing stories, while Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp already offer the same. Facebook had even tried ephemeral messaging with a now-shuttered app called Slingshot.