Instagram tests unique location-based Stories

Instagram appears to be testing a new feature that assembles Instagram Stories by location via the location sticker. Dubbed Location Stories, app users can visit business or brand Instagram pages and view slideshow Stories of posts tagging the relevant location.

Let me confirm what you may be thinking: yes, this is a unique feature for Instagram. It’s not another Snapchat clone. Indeed, Snapchat doesn’t offer anything quite like it.

Instagram VP of Product Kevin Weil confirmed that the addition was currently being tested at TechCrunch’s Disrupt NYC conference.

Location Stories are powered by location stickers which users add. Essentially, they will make it easier for users to check out what’s been happening at a certain location over the last few days.

There’s some good advertising potential here for brands and retailers to tap into by featuring specific contents. For example, a bar may boost visitor numbers by featuring location tags of customers from a recent hot event.

It’s also a good opportunity for travellers to check out landmarks and sights. Finding out what the weather is like may be another potential usage.

However, moderation could become a key issue for Instagram in the future as some users may post offensive content. In addition, Trey Stout, Chief Technology Officer, for ScribbleChat, cautions that exciting new app features may lose relevance as app companies battle to roll out new user tools faster.

“None of the big social media networks can grow anymore without siphoning users from another platform. The US mobile app market is becoming zero-sum. The victor of this race to goofier images will be the one that actually delivers its users’ intent the best. These effects are becoming more and more sophisticated (expensive) to develop, and have a very short shelf-life. How many times will you really use a “nerd” filter before you’re tire of it? People send messages to share joy and reduce pain, the winning company will focus less on the novelty of this tech, and on the humans behind the apps.”