It appears that Instagram is developing a major new feature: “Collections” of saved posts that can be publicly viewed.
While Instagram has had a "Saved" feature for two years now where users can bookmark posts for later viewing and even catalogue them into different private collections, this Collections feature currently in development takes it many steps further and could be a big shift in the way people use the app.
Spotted by the keen eye of software engineer Jane Manchun Wong, she was able to access this prototype feature built into the Instagram for Android code and provide a screenshot on her Twitter.
Instagram Collections will allow users to save posts in groups that are viewable to the public. Further, it appears that multiple contributors to a Collection can be tagged in so more than one person can add items to the group.
The obvious comparisons can be made to Pinterest, and the timing with that company just filing for IPO this month is suspect. Instagram Collections could also alleviate some issues of photo stealing by making a clearer distinction that what a person shares on a Collection board is not their work, but they identify with it, rather than grabbing an image and posting directly into their feed with no permission or credit.
As with any feature under internal development, there is no guarantee that it will be released to the public. However, to me it does seem like an obviously missing feature once you've seen it. What are your thoughts? Would Instagram Collections go as far as replacing Pinterest for you? People also said Instagram Stories wouldn't replace Snapchat, but here we are.