Instagram May Add Account Switching Feature to iOS App

February 23, 2016 - 2 minutes read


60-second mobile ads aren’t the only change rocking the Instagram platform this month, as the company began rolling out experimental support for “account switching” — although the move may be less a calculated move to boost engagement than an effort to please the large part of their userbase that uses multiple accounts in spite of the difficulty of logging in and logging out each time they want to make a post. For Dallas iPhone app developers, the move showcases how making it easier for users to “misuse” your platform can actually boost engagement and screen time. (Think Twitter’s rampant bots and gag accounts.)

Mobile app development reporters at TechCrunch attributed the move to the company’s large 20-something userbase, who commonly maintain two accounts: one public, one private. While public accounts tend to feature the user’s real name and a considered, curated photo collection, private accounts are usually invite-only and feature off-the-cuff humorous content intended for close friends. Mobile app developers have a similar double-sided relationship with the popular photo-sharing social media platform, maintaining one or more personal accounts alongside brand-building business accounts for startups.

Adding account-switching functionality to Instagram also stands to greatly benefit startups and mobile app marketers who use the platform to engage with their audiences, as well as social media professionals who maintain multiple client accounts.

The feature has only been seen within the iOS, and company statements have not indicated whether the feature will roll out as a permanent addition, or at what date. In light of the overall positive media attention given to a relatively small feature addition, it seems likely that Instagram’s mobile app developers will introduce account-switching to the iOS and Android versions of the app sooner than later. Doing so would surely contribute to user engagement with the app, bringing more eyes in front of ads and translating to a revenue boost for the already wildly successful social media startup.

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