Instagram users have always loved just about everything related to the app, and generally, its updates have been received quite favorably. However, after the service’s acquisition by Facebook, it’s the first time that an Instagram update has come under some criticism. Instagram was updated just a couple of days ago to add iPhone 5 support, but that wasn’t the only change in the app. The update removed live filters from the iPhone 5 version. Previously, it was possible to apply filters to a scene before snapping a photo, but now the Instagram developers have decided that this feature is a little disruptive, as you can apply the same filters after shooting a picture, and testing them out pre-shooting does nothing but waste the time of their users. If you don’t agree with this logic, there is a workaround that will let you use the live filters, even on iPhone 5. The solution is based on what appears to be a bug in the Instagram update, so it might stop working at any time in the future, but everything is functional for now.
The method to get live filters back in the app might sound a little unintuitive, as it has to be repeated every time you want to see the filter strip in the camera. Here is everything you need to do in order to get the elusive effects in the app’s camera mode.
- Hit the middle camera button from the app’s bottom bar to launch the Instagram camera.
- Tap the gallery button located in the bottom left corner.
- Select any photo from your iPhone’s camera roll, and open it in Instagram’s viewer by pressing the Choose button.
- Once the image shows up in the app’s image viewer, hit the red cross button located in the bottom bar.
- This will take you back to your phone’s image library, but instead of selecting another image, just hit Cancel.
Loading and removing an image from the Instagram camera menu in this way will leave you in capture mode, but with the live filters showing at the bottom. The screenshot you see above has been taken on our iPhone 4, after the latest Instagram update. While this workaround won’t give you the arrow button back (the one in the bottom right corner), you will still see the filters before snapping a photo.
This guide is only useful for iPhone 5 users, as live filters are available on all other iOS devices even after the new Instagram update. Instagram is available at the following link, and can be downloaded for free.