For years, Instagram users have been expressing themselves with all manner of filters, effects and hashtags — but there’s always been one nagging limitation: Every photo and video had to be square. That’s no longer the case as of Thursday, the photo-sharing service announced in a blog post.
Instagram has added new layout options in addition to its signature square for pictures and videos in a bid to attract more advertisers and to stop users defecting to more flexible services such as Snapchat.
Instagram will let users upload portrait and landscape photos and video, in addition to the 1×1 square format.
Instagram users will be able to adjust the orientation of their photos to portrait or landscape by tapping on the format icon before editing. Once shared, the full-sized version of the photo will appear on other users’ feeds, but the post will still show up as a center-cropped square on users’ profile pages.
“It turns out that nearly one in five photos or videos people post aren’t in the square format, and we know that it hasn’t been easy to share this type of content on Instagram,” the firm said in a blog post.
“Friends get cut out of group shots, the subject of your video feels cramped and you can’t capture the Golden Gate Bridge from end to end,” it said.
“We’re especially excited about what this update means for video on Instagram, which in widescreen can be more cinematic than ever,” the post continues.
In addition to the formatting change, Instagram will now allow users to adjust the intensity of all filters with either photos or videos.