If you need to use Instagram on PC as well as mobile, find out what sets the two apps apart. Some features change or don’t even exist, depending on which version of Instagram you’re using.
Here are some key differences between mobile and desktop Instagram apps. At the very least, you’ll know what to expect from each platform so you can choose the best one for each task.
1. Desktop App Only Creates Posts
When you hit the More On Instagram’s mobile app, you can choose to share several things besides posts, including reels, stories, and guides.
Unfortunately, Instagram on PC only allows you to create posts. This is a major factor to consider when deciding where to share different types of content.
That said, posting to Instagram from Windows or macOS has its advantages, which should improve as computer and web applications evolve.
2. Crop works differently on every app
On the mobile app, you can upload an image and tap the Crop icon to choose between the original size of the image, whether portrait or landscape, and a square cut.
You can zoom and move the image to get the perfect shot, but when it comes to cropping, Instagram on mobile isn’t very flexible.
The desktop app compensates for this with two additional options in the crop icon. When you click on it, you have the choice between the original size and 1:1, but also 4:5 and 16:9.
Even if you know the perfect sizes for photos and videos on Instagram, sometimes it’s easy to get it wrong. The PC application can make small adjustments for portrait and landscape images to save you the extra editing work.
3. Only Instagram on mobile can instantly improve photos
A feature that makes the mobile app more useful than the desktop version is the Lux tool that automatically enhances photos without you having to edit anything.
You’ll find his magic wand icon at the top of your dashboard in the second step of creating a new post, where you can further edit the image.
Lux doesn’t always get it right, but it’s handy for quick messages. And it’s only available on your smartphone.
Instagram on PC can adjust your images quite well with filters and effect sliders, but the mobile version has a greater range of tools.
It offers 10 additional filters, for beginners, such as Mayfair, Lo-Fi and X-Pro II. You can even change the order of your filters by tapping on each one and moving them around, which isn’t an option on PC.
On mobile, you also have six other ways to edit your photos, including highlights, sharpening, and tilt shift. All this allows you to create really interesting posts for your profile, especially if you follow our tips for high quality Instagram photos.
5. Instagram on mobile lets you crosspost
When you reach the final posting stage on your phone, whether it’s a photo or a reel, Instagram lets you share it to Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.
These settings are not available on the desktop app. You have to manually share your Instagram posts to other platforms.
While both versions of Instagram let you trim and choose a cover for your video, your mobile device offers additional ways to edit your post that the desktop app lacks.
You can add text, stickers, filters, sound effects, etc.
If you want your post to have such features on your computer, you should edit the video before uploading it to Instagram or use the mobile app instead.
7. Instagram video calls are limited to mobile
Instagram for PC comes with its normal messaging service, but it offers nothing but that for communicating with friends.
The mobile version, on the other hand, allows you to make video calls and even create rooms for group sessions, whether friendly or professional. Instagram isn’t one of the best video conferencing software options, but it’s worth considering.
8. You can only shop on Instagram for mobile
Another difference between Instagram’s mobile and desktop apps is that the latter lacks the Shop functionality, an increasingly important part of this social network.
The Shop The icon and section only exist on your smartphone, where you can browse the products and brands you are interested in and buy things directly from the app.
On your computer, you will notice that Instagram has a Explore separate icon from icon Look for tool. This makes your dashboard tidier, while allowing you to use both features at the same time.
These functions are merged into a single tool on the mobile app, so you have no choice but to look at other people’s posts while searching for something.
10. Desktop Instagram App Shows Posts Saved to Your Profile
Instagram on PC and mobile gives you the option to save posts. The difference between the two versions is that the desktop app displays them directly on your profile.
Under the Checked in you’ll find everything you’ve tagged so far, but you can also group them by clicking New collectiongiving a title to the file and selecting the photos or videos to include.
Each new collection will be placed separately on your profile. To add them quickly, just hover the mouse over the to safeguard icon on individual messages until a menu appears with a list of your collections. Select the correct one and Instagram will automatically save the post there.
11. Instagram on mobile lets you create an avatar
Something fun that you can only do on your phone is create an avatar for your Instagram account, as well as Facebook and Messenger. Just go to Settings > Account > Avatar and start the creation process.
Once done, you can choose to update all of these social media profiles. To change the avatar, you can simply follow the same steps.
12. Instagram settings differ between apps
In addition to missing avatar creation in the desktop app settings, there are other differences between the two versions’ customization options.
In addition to layouts that place common settings in different places, for example, the mobile app includes a Purchases tab that the desktop version lacks, as well as Orders and payment settings.
For better or worse, your phone also tracks your activity in much greater detail. While the desktop app has a Login activity the mobile version looks at how much time you spend on Instagram, your interactions, every change you’ve made to your account, and more.
If you like to keep tabs on your online habits, there are options for your computer too, like Chrome extensions that track your activity. Play around with Instagram’s settings on desktop and mobile app to fine-tune your user experience and discover other differences.
Customize Instagram on your phone and computer
Whether you prefer one version of Instagram or decide to combine the benefits of both apps, it’s worth knowing all the platform can do for you. Projects in photography, video, marketing and beyond have a lot to gain.
That said, Instagram changes over time, including the differences between its mobile and desktop apps, so stay on top of your profile settings and performance to ensure it always looks its best.