Instagram to test support for taller photos following backlash over video focus

Instagram in original aspect ratio on a Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3's big screen
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Instagram says it will soon begin testing larger images on the platform.
  • Users will be able to post images in a 9:16 aspect ratio when the test rolls out.
  • Instagram has received backlash for its recent TikTok-like changes to video.

You may not have been a fan of Instagram's recent changes, but the company hopes to introduce a new change that some users may appreciate.

When asked during an AMA on Friday if Instagram was working on any cool features for photos, Instagram head Adam Mosseri stated that the company plans to start testing support for taller images (via The Verge).

"One that we hope to test in a week or two is support for 9:16 photos," Moserri responds in his story. "Because you could have tall videos, but you cannot have tall photos on Instagram, and so we thought maybe we should make sure that we treat both equally."

Right now, Instagram supports images as tall as 4:5, which isn't always ideal for frequent posters (such as myself), mainly when smartphones normally shoot images at 3:4 (or 4:3 when horizontal). It can leave parts of the top and bottom cut out of the image, meaning users have to make a choice to leave out a section of the image. Support for taller photos could help alleviate this issue for some, particularly for people who shoot pictures as tall as 9:16.

The move to support taller images follows recent backlash the company received for inching the platform towards a TikTok-like app with an increased focus on videos, despite wanting to "treat both [photos and videos] equally." The company began testing a new full-screen layout that pretty much no one liked, and thus the company decided to roll back some of its recent changes in order to brainstorm a "new idea or iteration."

Despite the step back, support for taller images sees the platform inching closer toward more full-screen content, and it'll be interesting to see how users react to the test when it rolls out.

Derrek Lee
Managing Editor

Derrek is the managing editor of Android Central, helping to guide the site's editorial content and direction to reach and resonate with readers, old and new, who are just as passionate about tech as we are. He's been obsessed with mobile technology since he was 12, when he discovered the Nokia N90, and his love of flip phones and new form factors continues to this day. As a fitness enthusiast, he has always been curious about the intersection of tech and fitness. When he's not working, he's probably working out.