Instagram launched “an early version” of geostickers for its stories feature in New York City and Jakarta, taking another page out of Snapchat’s playbook.
The company first introduced stickers in December and, in a statement announcing the move, said geostickers are “another creative option for adding context to everyday moments.”
When users take a photo or video and tap the sticker icon, they will have the option of adding geostickers which are customised for particular cities. Users may see other stickers appear when they visit select neighbourhoods and landmarks – each “designed to match the vibe of the location it represents.”
Users can adjust the size and placement of the stickers and mix them with other creative tools, which Instagram said it wanted to introduce more of.
The feature is similar to Snapchat’s geofilters, which it launched in 2014, and means the only big Snapchat feature Instagram Stories doesn’t have is augmented reality (AR) selfie lenses.
However, Instagram could access parent company Facebook’s AR expertise to bridge the gap in its service. Facebook acquired video effects company MSQRD – at the time called Masquerade – last year to bring AR masks to its products, which have been rolled out on Facebook and Messenger.
Instagram Stories counts 150 million daily users, “more than Snap’s original version of the feature,” according to TechCrunch.
“Instagram Stories is stealing Snapchat usage, which led Snapchat’s user growth to plummet 82 percent in the two quarters after Facebook’s copycat spun up,” the report added.