Instagram adds Reels and Shop tabs, its first home screen redesign in years

Facebook-owned Instagram is adding the Reels and Shop tabs to the home screen of its mobile app for iOS and Android, a major change to the app’s layout for the first time in years.

According to the company, the Reels feature which first launched a few months ago (Reels is Instagram’s TikTok)  now has its own tab. Instagram must be pretty desperate if it thinks a TikTok-like feature should be front and center on its service, if you ask me.

The company says it wants the Reels tab to be a kind of a stage, “a place where people can share their creativity with the world and have a chance to break out and find an audience.” As for the Shop tab, this is where you’ll find your personalized recommendations, editors’ picks curated by Instagram’s @shop channel, shoppable videos, new product collections and more.

Instagram defended its decision to update the app’s home screen:

We don’t take these changes lightly – we haven’t updated Instagram’s home screen in a big way for quite a while. But how people create and enjoy culture has changed and the biggest risk to Instagram is not that we change too fast, but that we don’t change and become irrelevant. We’re excited about the new design and believe it gives the app a much-needed refresh, while staying true to our core value of simplicity. We’ll continue listening to your feedback so we can keep improving Instagram for you.

Remember the time when Instagram was a place for your and your friends’ photos that didn’t bombard you with ads with every swipe? Good times.

Instagram is a free download from Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store.