Instagram announces new home screen tabs for Reels and Shop

Instagram has announced a major addition to the home screen on its mobile apps for iPhone and Android. The apps will be getting two new tabs for Reels and Shop. The Reels tab will let users discover new short video clips, which are similar to TikTok’s content, while the Shop tab will let users discover and buy products from various brands and accounts.

Instagram adds home screen tabs for Reels and Shop

The new tabs will be added to the bottom navigation bar of the app, while Activity and New Post buttons are being moved to the top right, giving the app a crowded look. Rather than separate the Reels feature and create its own app, Instagram insists on making it part of the main app, as it did with Stories when it cloned Snapchat’s main feature. With this new change, Instagram intends to allow users to discover more Reels content, even though there is already a Discover section in the app which showcases a variety of photos and videos.

What Instagram is doing here is trying to increase engagement for both Reels and Shop features, by moving them out of Discover and putting them front and center. TikTok has shown how short fun videos can take over the world and provide hours of engagement for users. Shop allows users to discover and make purchases from various brands, creators, and small businesses, right from the app. It makes Instagram an instant e-commerce platform by allowing users to find recommendations, curated picks, various collections and more.

Instagram is aware that users will probably not like these changes and has explained why they are making these big modifications to Instagram’s home screen.

We don’t take these changes lightly – we haven’t updated Instagram’s home screen in a big way for quite a while. But how people create and enjoy culture has changed, and the biggest risk to Instagram is not that we change too fast, but that we don’t change and become irrelevant. We’re excited about the new design and believe it gives the app a much-needed refresh, while staying true to our core value of simplicity. We’ll continue listening to your feedback so we can keep improving Instagram for you.

What do you think of the new changes to Instagram?

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