Before Facebook bought Instagram, the app kept an air of exclusivity about it. It was only available for the iOS platform and remained so for a long time until Facebook’s acquisition turned things in a different direction. Since then, Instagram has slowly opened up with a reasonably functional web interface and apps for the Android and Windows phone platform. The app has just received a small update that opens it up further allowing users to post to Instagram from any other app via the share menu. Before, users could export an image to Instagram or save it to their camera roll and access it from the Instagram app but as of version 8.2, that is all history.
To share a photo, open it in any app of your choice. You will have to enable it first from the share menu’s action buttons. Inside any app that supports viewing and sharing photos, tap the share button and then tap Instagram.
You will be asked to enter a caption, hashtags and all, and then post directly to Instagram. Instagram has made this possible on iOS by making use of extensions. The app update basically comes with the extension which is what does the magic. If you visit your Instagram account, you can see the photos are posted without giving any indication they were posted from a different app.
The update might seem small now and perhaps many users won’t think much of it since you cannot apply any filters to an image when you post it like this but other photo editing apps will likely benefit from the change. Instagram’s filters are popular but the social network itself is far more popular and users often use a team of apps (and sometimes a team of real people) to edit a photo before posting it to Instagram. In this case, an app’s ability to now post directly to Instagram post editing will be welcomed by developers and eventually users.
If you don’t see Instagram in the share option just yet, make sure the app is up to date. The update does not seem to have arrived for Android just yet. It might take a little time to appear but it will eventually roll out to all users.