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[Update: App description, not name] Facebook wants the world to know it owns Instagram and WhatsApp

Even though Facebook acquired both Instagram and WhatsApp several years ago, the two services have operated fairly independently for a while. There has been some limited integration between the three in the form of friends and Story sharing across services, without being taken any further. Back in January, though, the company announced it's working on a unified backend for its messaging apps, and even considering cross-platform chat. But before doing so, Facebook needs everybody to know Instagram and WhatsApp are part of the company, as it wants to append its name to both services.

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Instagram’s new anti-bullying tools remind commenters not to be dicks

As with many things in life, bullying is a two-way street. To prevent it from taking place, the bully should be able to be prevented from harming someone else and the bullied should be empowered to take action and represent themselves without fear of repercussions. Instagram, which can be a hotbed for interpersonal conflict, has been ramping up anti-bullying measures in recent months and has just brought in two new tools to let bullies rethink what they want to say and to let the bullied manage their counterpart's presence on their posts.

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Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp all experiencing global media outage

Every few months or so, Facebook's servers seemingly decide to take a nap. This time around, the core services themselves (Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp) are still up, but people around the world are complaining about images and other media not being able to load.

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13

WhatsApp will let you share your status with Facebook, Instagram, and other apps

Despite WhatsApp's near-ubiquity in my region, its Status feature has failed to gain much traction even though it's been available for over two years. Some of my friends love it and post multiple updates per day, but they're a clear minority. Yet, WhatsApp seems to think there's hidden potential in statuses and has already announced that ads would be coming to it in 2020. Another feature now rolling out in beta is the ability to share a status to other apps, most notably Facebook.

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7

Instagram kills Direct, its standalone Snapchat competitor, merges it into main app

In order to fiercely compete with Snapchat, Facebook launched Stories on almost all its messaging platforms, beginning with Instagram. The feature was so popular it succeeded in dethroning its rival, which encouraged the company to release a standalone messaging app called Direct. Although the new software brought some extra features like exclusive filters, Instagram has decided to merge all functionalities into its main application.

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24

Instagram Stories camera will get makeover, influencers will be able to tag products for you to buy

Instagram has announced new features that are intended to enhance the experiences for the 500 million daily active users of its Stories feature — one of these features is available right now while the other may take some time and adjustment to get used to. The social media platform is also building a new way for users to browse and buy the clothes their favorite influencers are wearing.

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10

Instagram is finally working on seek bar for videos — hello 2005!

Some luxuries of our online lives can be gravely underestimated until you hit some nook or cranny of the World Wide Web that doesn't have them. Take seek bars in videos. Have you ever stopped to think how awesome they are? You can skip forward if you're not interested in what's happening now but would like to check if there's something else down the line in that video. Or you can go back and re-watch what you missed or misunderstood. None of it sounds like an indulgent ask until you open Instagram. The social platform has been averse to such an extravagant feature, but seems to be working on it now.

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5

Instagram Checkout lets you buy stuff without having to leave the app

Since the app is increasingly used by influencers and fashion brands to showcase clothing, footwear, and other hot products, it's no surprise that Instagram has worked to build out its shopping features. Purchase links appear in Stories, you can save collections of potential buys for later, and there's even been talk of a standalone shopping app. Wouldn't it be even more convenient if you could just shop from within the Instagram app itself?

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15

'Pay with Facebook' option spotted as rumors of Facebook Coin cryptocurrency intensify

Some Italian-language Facebook users have noticed a new option in the app that invites them to "Paga con Facebook" ("Pay with Facebook") alongside a Bitcoin-esque icon. At the same time, fresh rumors have emerged about the company's plans to enter the cryptocurrency space with Facebook Coin, so it would seem that we're not far away from an official announcement on the subject.

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10

Facebook page admins can now reply to Instagram DMs from FB, as shades of cross-platform integration emerge

Over the years, Facebook has purchased many successful businesses but has for a large part kept these services separate, at least as far as the public can observe. But now we're slowly starting to see that change, as Facebook Page admins become able to respond to Instagram Direct Messages right from their inbox.

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