Instagram might be able to offer everything you need to keep in touch with friends in the future. TechCrunch has discovered hidden codes and icons for “Call” and “Video Call” in the platform’s and its standalone Direct messaging app’s Android APKs. Instagram refused to comment about TC’s finding, but APKs typically contain features developers plan to switch on later. Having the ability to make audio and video call from within direct messages would make Instagram an even bigger threat to Snapchat, which could spell trouble for Snap, seeing as Instagram Stories already has more users.
(TC reader Ishan Agarwal took this screenshot of the icons found inside the APKs.)
The features could also transform Instagram’s role in your life. In its current form, it serves as a platform where you can see snippets of your friends’ activities — their highlight reels, even — but you probably still rely on a chat app like Messenger to connect with them on a more personal level. If and when these features arrive, you won’t need to hop on another app anymore: you’ll simply have to open up your DM and hit the call button.