Meta's New Instagram Feature Aims to Revitalize Authentic Content Sharing

Emma Jones


Meta's New Instagram Feature Aims to Revitalize Authentic Content Sharing

Meta is known for drawing inspiration from its competitors, and now they're at it again with a fresh twist on Instagram. This time, Meta is borrowing from the popular platforms BeReal and Snapchat to offer a new feature named "Peek." Aimed at blending authenticity with ephemerality, Peek encourages users to share real-time, unedited photos that can only be viewed once. While still in the prototype phase, this feature could significantly shift how we share moments on social media.

What sets Peek apart is its requirement for spontaneity. Unlike existing Instagram Stories that stay visible for 24 hours, images shared via Peek will be gone after just one view. To capture a Peek, users must take photos directly within the app, eliminating the option to upload pre-snapped or edited imagery. First uncovered by reverse engineer Alessandro Paluzzi, this prototype seeks to merge the authenticity of BeReal with the fleetingness of Snapchat.

This isn't Meta's first attempt to capture authenticity-driven social sharing. Back in 2022, Instagram tested Candid Stories, which similarly nudged users to post unfiltered photos at random prompts throughout the day. Though that feature never saw a full rollout, Peek could potentially sidestep its pitfalls by offering more flexibility. With Peek, Instagram users decide when to capture their supposedly genuine moments, providing a less restrictive, self-guided experience.

Peek's unique appeal lies in its flexibility. Users aren’t tied to random notifications or specific times to share their lives. This flexibility might be crucial for attracting users who appreciate authenticity but value their freedom to choose when to share. While some reports suggest BeReal is losing its momentum, Meta seems optimistic that this new approach could rejuvenate user interest. By focusing on flexibility, Instagram might just hit the sweet spot that other platforms missed.

Even though Peek is in an internal prototype stage, its eventual release could mark another significant shift for Instagram. If it does go live, Peek may see some changes or even a rebrand based on user feedback and further testing. As social media continues to evolve, Meta’s recurrent strategy of blending the best features from different platforms might just help them stay ahead in the highly competitive space. Whether or not Peek will take Instagram by storm remains to be seen, but it’s clear that Meta isn’t done innovating yet.