How Instagram Evolved Over the Last Decade

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The evolution of Instagram over the last decade reflects the evolution of the entire social media landscape during this time. In the beginning, Instagram was a runaway success or a small startup in the Apps store. The platform seemed to have a chance to compete with established companies. But, the platform has grown significantly and everybody wants to have a presence there. People even buy Instagram followers to enhance their popularity on this platform.

But, since its launch in 2010, Instagram has been evolving. Instagram started as a photo-sharing app and by 2012, it was having more than 100,000 downloads every day.


During its infancy stage, the layout of this platform was simple. It had a basic feed for photos only. The feed showed the user’s name, photo, photo likes, and description. This is the same for the current Instagram feed.

The current and original layouts of Instagram have similarities. However, they also have significant differences. For instance, the logo of this app was different in terms of fonts and occupied the entire top part of the page.

What’s more, the platform provided more organized and larger options when it came to navigation. Thus, Instagram navigation has changed slightly over the last decade.


The core design of the Instagram feed has remained the same. Nevertheless, it has been made more intuitive, sleeker, and it’s powered by enhanced algorithms. The camera looks the same but cleaner with a white design.

Over the last decade, Instagram’s design has been improved to eliminate the busy look it had at first. This has partly been achieved by incorporating a white background.

The giant banner for the upper logo has also been replaced with a relatively smaller logo. The navigation bar has also been improved to include an icon for the camera, making Story recording easier. A TV icon has also been introduced to bring in IGTV. Instagram has also included a paper airplane icon into its design to enhance direct inbox messaging.

The lower navigation of Instagram has been adjusted too by swapping out the feed for popular posts with a more effective Search Tab. This has consolidated the trending, popular posts, and the search bar. These adjustments make discovering new content or account easier. That’s because users need to go to the trending, popular posts tab or use the search bar.


In addition to layout and design changes, Instagram has also introduced new features. Initially, the platform had basic features. That’s because Instagram was primarily designed as a platform for sharing short videos or photos on a simple feed that could be seen by followers. Learning about an Instagram account required the user to search a hashtag or a person. A user could also tap a Popular Feed tab to discover posts from major influencers. The other option was to surf through the Newsfeed that highlighted posts from the major publications and companies.

But, this has changed and Instagram has introduced the following features over the last decade.

Instagram Stories

In addition to the standard camera, Instagram has a special camera that enables users to record their Instagram Stories. This is a game-changing feature that Instagram launched in 2016.

Anybody that uses Instagram has already seen or created an Instagram Story. This is a feature that allows a user to create and upload a video or images that tell a specific story about a brand or the life of a person.

A person with over 10,000 followers or a business account that has been verified can link their Instagram Stories to the content of their website.

The platform’s camera allows users to take Smartphone-shaped videos or shots that are vertical when creating their Instagram Stories. After that, the featured icons can be used to zest up content with sounds, texts, color-overlay filters, and GIF stickers. Different AR features and video filters can be used to zest up Instagram content.


The current Instagram app includes the IGTV feature. The platform launched this feature in 2018. The IGTBV content can currently be seen and it’s usually related to the interests of the users. Users can search their preferred IGTV content by navigating to the Search tab and then selecting IGTV.

Using this feature, influencers and brands are streaming longer-form live content or uploading it in vertical format. Under the IGTV tab, this content can be highlighted on the accounts of users.

Shoppable Posts

After Facebook purchased Instagram in 2012, new features were added to enable brands to use the platform with their catalog for the Facebook Marketplace. Shoppable Posts is one of these features. Using this feature, brands can tag posts with their product shots linking to their Facebook Marketplace product listing.

The Shoppable Posts feature is different from Instagram Story because it’s accessible to Instagram business accounts and it’s linked to the catalog of the Facebook Marketplace.

User Habits

How people think about pictures has changed, thanks to Instagram. The platform has also altered the eating habits of some users. For instance, some people can’t start eating until they capture the image of their meals perfectly. What’s more, Instagram has become an effective tool for marketing and it keeps growing. Instagram remains popular and relevant to users due to the meaningful evolutions it has undergone over the last decade.

For instance, adding Boomerang and Stories has made the app feel fresh with features that cater to their needs. And this has continued to expand the user base of this platform. Many celebrity influencers make their followers believe that they live extravagant lives to sell products. Additionally, some people have continued to behave irresponsibly to capture perfect pictures. Nevertheless, Instagram has continued to be an entertaining and simple social media platform.

The bottom Line

Instagram started as a platform where users could follow celebrities and share photos. However, the platform has evolved over the years to cater to the needs of users. Today, the platform focuses on availing unique ephemeral posts to users. Instagram has evolved to include features, design, and layout that make it one of the best social media platforms that are available today.



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