Instagram is launching a video chat feature

The platform is also introducing a new format for its Explore section

Facebook’s photo and video sharing platform Instagram is broadening its feature set yet again with the addition of video chatting.

Facebook announced the addition, among other new features, at its F8 developer conference today. CEO Mark Zuckerberg noted in his keynote that Instagram users are already using the platform’s live chat feature as a way to hang out with other users.

“People use live videos to just hang out,” he said. “It’s amazing how many of these tools are about bringing us together.”

To use video chat, users can tap a new camera icon at the top of a direct messaging thread. The company is currently testing the feature, though plans to start rolling it out globally “soon.”

The new feature allows Instagram’s users to use Instagram not only for posting, but for more private one-to-one communication.

Additionally, Instagram is adding an improved Explore tab that refines content into topic channels. The new Explore section is rolling out in the coming weeks.

The social media platform is also gaining support for third-party AR experiences, such as face filters, text styles and stickers. Instagram announced that some new creative effects will be on view soon through prominent accounts held by people and organizations like Ariana Grande and Buzzfeed.

It was further announced that multiple other apps will offer the ability to share content directly to Instagram Stories. For instance, in Spotify and Go Pro, content will be directly pulled over to the Instagram camera, where it’s possible to edit and publish.

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