Ignoring someone’s text but still scrolling through your Instagram feed? Now you may get called out, after Instagram unveiled an updated feature to notify users when their friends are on the app.
The green dot will appear next to friends’ profile names to indicate when they’re active, similar to real-time status notifications on Facebook Messenger, which like Instagram, is also owned by Facebook. The feature was launched in an effort to make its easier for users to connect with each other, the company said in a blog post.
The green dots only apply to friends who follow you or people you have directly messaged. They’ll appear next to names in the direct inbox and when users are selecting from their friend list when sharing a particular post.
Want to see what it will look like? In the lower right hand corner of someone’s post on your feed, tap on the paper plane-looking icon. When you click on that, you can share that person’s post with your friends. A list of friends you often direct message pops up: if a friend has a green dot next to her name, that means she’s also on Instagram, so you could expect an instant reply.
The ability to see when your Instagram friends are online was already present on the app. In the same area where the green dot will show up, a message in grey text next to their profiles accounted for the last time they were active.
You can also hide if you don’t want people to know if you’re online. The function can be turned off by going into settings under “Activity Status.” This ensures no one can see when you’re active and you can’t see when your friends are active.
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