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Instagram is killing off its standalone direct messaging app

CNET logo CNET 5/16/2019 Jackson Ryan
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In the coming month, you'll no longer be able to slide into someone else's DMs via the Direct for Instagram app.

It appears the photo-sharing social media behemoth is cutting off support for the Direct app "in the coming month". However, all of those important messages you've slung to mates via the magic of Instagram aren't disappearing for good -- they're just moving over to the dedicated Instagram app.

Spotted by social media industry commentator Matt Navarra, and a couple of dedicated fans in the Play Store, users are now being greeted with a message when using the Direct for Instagram app that simple says it "is going away".

That seems like a pretty nice way to put it, Instagram.

Direct was originally unveiled on Dec. 7, 2017 as a camera-first app, that had more than a passing resemblance to Snapchat. That test rolled out to Chile, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Turkey and Uruguay with details of a worldwide release scant. At the time, a company spokesperson told The Verge "Direct has grown within Instagram over the past four years, but we can make it even better if it stands on its own."

Now it appears Direct is gone, before it ever really lived but the reasons for the reversal aren't immediately clear. Direct for Instagram seemed to be following the same trajectory as Messenger, which parent company Facebook spun out of the Facebook app back in 2014.

Instagram did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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