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Instagram now has web profiles: they’re simplified versions of what you have on your mobile phone but they’re there. And the consensus seems to be “about bloody time”.
At present the profiles are only available to a select whitelist, but they’re expected to roll out to the photo-sharing service’s 100-million plus members by the end of the week.
The reason your Instagram web profile will be so stripped down is fairly simple: the company still considers itself a mobile-first player. As is the case with mobile, you can like and comment on people’s photos, browse your own and other users’ photos and change your profile details. And that seems to be about it.
The images making up your Facebook Timeline-esque header are random, while the ones below it are chronological. No plugins, no ads.
One thing that’s clear however is that the move is a welcome one. We explored why some of tech’s leading voices think web profiles for Instagram are a good idea.
1. Alexia Tsotsis —TechCrunch
Tsotsis is among those to have been given a whitelisted profile and really seems to appreciate the stripped down interface, calling it “incredibly elegant”.
“After having played around with the product myself for about 20 minutes, I can appreciate that Instagram for Web is faster, simpler and less noisy than my Facebook profile,” she says.
2. Christina Warren — Mashable
Mashable’s Christina Warren meanwhile is enthused by how simple the web profile was to use. She also seems to think that they make complete sense.
“I couldn’t help but be struck by how nice it was to have the ability to browse through my past photos from the comfort of my web browser,” she says.
3. Harrison Weber — The Next Web
Weber is concerned with the similarities between the new web profiles and Facebook profiles, saying that “mirroring Facebook on Instagram doesn’t feel quite right”. For the most part however, he agrees with the consensus. “Instagram’s full profiles are sure to help bring the service further into the forefront,” he says.
He’s also really likes the over all feel of the design:
Instagram’s new profiles feel very well designed, with a strong attention to detail. Even hovering over Instagram’s thumbnail grid yields a pleasing, subtle animation. Nearly everything was considered.
4. MG Siegler — Parislemon
Siegler’s thoughts on the web profiles are concise, to say the least. They are however among the more profound we’ve seen so far:
It strikes me that a quick, dynamic overview of your life in pictures is maybe even more compelling than the overall Facebook Timeline because it’s so simple. Everyone understands pictures.