Instagram’s updated web interface is the closest thing you’ll get to a native iPad app

The refreshed Instagram web app takes advantage of larger screens like your laptop instead of looking like a larger version of the mobile app.

Screenshot of Instagram's updated web interface
Navigation icons collapse depending on screen size | Image: Christian Zibreg/iDB
  • What’s happening? Instagram has refreshed its web app to take advantage of large monitors instead of looking like a badly scaled-up mobile interface.
  • Why care? Because a native Instagram iPad app isn’t happening and you deserve a better experience when using Instagram in a browser.
  • What to do? Test the new interface at via a desktop browser.

Instagram’s web app finally looks good on big screens

Instagram head Adam Mosseri announced some changes in a video on Instagram.

The changes include a refreshed web interface that looks better on large screens and the ability to schedule posts for creators and professional accounts.

Instagram’s web app was never particularly impressive, to begin with, but Meta has been working to make it perform better compared to its native mobile app.

“We know a lot of people use the web to multitask and we wanted to make sure Instagram was an as great experience as possible online,” Mosseri said. “So it is cleaner, faster and easier to use and it’s designed now to take advantage of large-screen monitors.” Read: How to post images and videos to Instagram on the web

To check out the web app, log in with your desktop browser at


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A post shared by Adam Mosseri (@mosseri)

Hands-on with the updated Instagram web app

The desktop interface now provides navigation in the lefthand column: Home, Search, Explore, Messages, Notifications, Create and Profile. This column makes navigation much easier than before, especially as it’s always visible.

Before this change, these sections were at the top of the grid, which required you to scroll up from wherever you were if you wanted to navigate to a different section of the app. The new, persistent side column solves this problem.

Depending on your screen size, the navigation column may collapse into icons.

To access the Instagram settings, your saved posts and other options, click the More icon in the bottom-left corner. Another update: The Explore and Search pages now show a full grid that spans across the available screen space.

The middle column resembles what you see in the mobile app. It’s basically your feed with stories from friends at the top. In the righthand column, you can choose between multiple Instagram profiles, see suggestions and more.

Still no iPad app

Instagram has never released an iPad app, and it doesn’t look like one is coming anytime soon. According to an earlier comment from Mosseri, the iPad was “not big enough” to justify a native app. With the updated web app, however, Meta can target multiple screen sizes without making a dedicated app for each.

“It’s still just not a big enough group of people to be a priority,” Mosseri responded to an inquiry from YouTube creator Marques Brownlee. “Hoping to get to it at some point, but right now we’re very heads down on other things.”