If you thought that Instagram would always remain a case of applying a handful of retro filters to your photos, sharing them over the social network and then viewing them on monotonous-looking lists and grids, you were wrong! Along with introducing several slick UI enhancements in the latest Instagram update, the team behind arguably one of the most popular social photo-sharing Android and iOS apps has introduced a brand new feature called Photo Map. The update sees the official Android and iOS client of Instagram move to version 3, and while there are no new filters for you to play around with, there is this amazing new Photo Map that, as its name implies, instills a touch of geolocation to your photo browsing and sharing experience. In simple words, you can now view your and your followers’ geo-tagged images on a map to see the exact location where those wonderful moments were snapped. Also introduced in the update is a totally revamped and well-polished user profile page, Popular photos grid, and uploader screen. That’s not all; the update also brings with it snappier performance, infinite scrolling of feeds (say goodbye to the ‘Load More’ button), option to report users, and copy image URLs (iOS only).
All other trinkets announced in the latest Instagram update aside, it’s the Photo Map feature that is likely to grab attention of one and all. Not only said feature adds new dimensions to photo browsing via Instagram, but also helps you with recalling where precisely on Earth (literally) did you capture those images. In case a user has a private account, their Photo Map can only be explored by approved followers. Otherwise, you’re authorized to view any user’s map you want to. Said feature can be accessed by hitting the Photo Map button on a user’s profile screen.
From there, you are taken to the thumbnail-laden map view, where each thumbnail represents the geo-location of the photo. The counter atop each thumbnail indicates the total number of photos that were captured and shared from a specific location. To geo-tag and make your own photos visible on map, all you need to do is mark the Add to Photo Map checkbox on the uploader screen. Said screen now also lets you write comparatively long captions for photos, so that you may be able to tell your story behind the image in more detailed manner. In addition, you can pick any image from your Gallery that you want to share, and geo-tag it using a custom location (powered by Foursquare).
The app’s Explore section has also received a facelift to present us with a redesigned grid view that now displays a maximum of three (larger) photo thumbnails per row instead of four.
If you haven’t yet received the latest Instagram update on your smartphone, or are looking forward to experiencing the awesomeness of this record-breaking app on your device for the first time, the download links provided below await.