Instagram is finally not trash on foldables, new tablet UI comes to the Galaxy Z Fold 5

Checking out the new Instagram app tablet UI on a Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • The Instagram app gets an updated UI that's better optimized for large displays.
  • The new UI is currently visible on the Galaxy Z Fold series and resembles Instagram's web interface.
  • Various UI elements have been moved around to make better use of larger screen sizes.

Despite being a popular social media service, Instagram is often criticized for not playing well with larger screen devices. In the past, several Android tablet users and Apple iPad owners demanded a standalone Instagram experience for their big screens, which now include foldables phones. However, the recent Galaxy Z Fold 5 launch might have changed the game as the app now has a new UI that makes better use of the larger display.

As spotted by 9to5Google, the Galaxy Z Fold 5 now supports Instagram's new UI for bigger screens, which is said to have begun slowly rolling out since the Galaxy Z Fold 5's launch in July. Android Central's Senior Content Producer, Nicholas Sutrich, has also witnessed the new UI change on his Galaxy Z Fold 5.

With the update, individual Instagram feed posts take up nearly the foldable screen. The new UI also better fits the display and doesn't appear as merely a stretched-out version of the mobile app. However, the Reels still have big black bars on either side of the video, which is understandable given the aspect ratio of reels the app supports.

The other significant change with the new interface is the shift of Home, Explore, Add New Post, Reels, and Account button placements, which are now moved to a left navigation pane instead of spread out at the top and bottom of the app, while Stories remain in a row at the top. It's not unlike Instagram's web UI, which features an identical interface.

The Meta-owned platform hasn't officially announced the rollout; perhaps it is still in the testing phase for large-screen devices like Android tablets and other foldables. Currently, the big screen UI change is applicable for the Galaxy Z Fold series and doesn't appear to be available on Android tablets or other foldables like the Pixel Fold. But given the new slow rollout, those devices will likely be added sooner than later.

Vishnu Sarangapurkar
News Writer

Vishnu works as a freelance News Writer for Android Central. For the past four years, he's been writing about consumer technology, primarily involving smartphones, laptops, and every other gizmo connected to the Internet. When he is away from keyboard, you can see him going on a long drive or chilling on a couch binge-watching some crime series.