Instagram Notes is today getting its first set of new features following its December 2022 public launch. Currently, Instagram Notes allows users to leave a status message that appears for their Close Friends or mutuals at the top of their inbox. With today’s update, Notes will also support music and translations, according to a post shared by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg via his Instagram Broadcast Channel this morning.
Before, users’ Notes could only include text and emoji, but now they’ll be able to share a 30-second clip of a song, as another way to express themselves. The expectation is that people could use the new Music Notes to share their moods, feelings, or just what favorite song they’ve been listening to lately. In addition to the shared clip, users can add a caption to a Music Note to share their thoughts, too, if they choose.
The company says the song clips will be supported in all markets worldwide where Instagram has music licensing rights.
The other new feature arriving with today’s update is Notes Translations. This feature simply allows users to tap a “See translation” link below a note in a different language in order to have it translated into their own. Instagram already supports translations across other areas of its app, like in Post descriptions, comments, and Reels, so this is simply making that same functionality available to Instagram Notes, as well.
During testing of Notes ahead of its launch late last year, Meta said it found users appreciated having a way to start conversations with friends in a lighthearted way. And, similar to how Twitter prompts users to share “what’s happening?” in its app, Instagram Notes asks users to “Share a thought…” Users can then type out a Note with up to 60 characters of text or emoji, which appears at the top of friends’ inboxes for 24 hours. Replies to Notes then come in through DMs (Direct Messages).
Though a bit under the radar, given the lack of adoption among certain friend groups, Instagram Notes has been allowing the company to experiment with text-based updates ahead of the launch of its Twitter clone, now in active development. In fact, Instagram had considered leveraging Notes as something of a Twitter competitor, The New York Times reported last year. But now that Instagram’s Twitter-like standalone and decentralized social app is being previewed to company employees, it’s unclear how its coming launch will ultimately impact user adoption or the company’s investment in the less prominent Instagram Notes feature.
The new features will begin rolling out today across Instagram’s global install base, but you may not see them immediately as large-scale rollouts can take time.