Instagram’s next feature could be a copy of BeReal

Instagram is testing a new feature called Candid Challenges, which bears a striking resemblance to BeReal, a photo-sharing app popular with Gen Z. The currently unreleased feature was seen by Alessandro Paluzzi, a developer known for reverse engineering apps and finding early versions of upcoming updates. An Instagram spokesperson confirmed that the feature is an “internal prototype,” but declined to provide additional details.

According to Paluzzi, Instagram users who participate in Candid Challenges will see a notification at a different time each day to take a photo of their surroundings. Upon prompting, Instagram’s camera will also open with forward-facing and rear-facing shutter releases, giving users a two-minute window to take a photo. Content shared through challenges will appear in the Stories tray.

If that sounds familiar, that’s because the functionality sounds nearly identical, a selfie app marketed as a more candid and authentic alternative to the mainstream social media platforms. The app, which originally launched in 2019, also prompts users to take a photo with their phone’s front and rear cameras at a random time every day. Daily prompts also expire after two minutes, after which users can see all the photos shared by their friends that day.

It’s not yet clear if or when Instagram intends to launch the feature. An Instagram spokesperson described the feature as an “internal prototype” that is “not being tested externally.” But the fact that the company is testing the functionality suggests that it is at least considering replicating the app within its own service.

BeReal has a large following among Gen Z and its popularity has increased in recent months. BeReal is currently in the first position in the Apple App Store, ahead of Instagram (No. 8) and Facebook (No. 18). It’s been in the top ten free apps for much of this summer.

Mark Zuckerberg has said that the future of Meta depends on attracting , who are spending more and more time on the platforms. And while TikTok is currently its main competitor, the company is known for its rivals and has often copied features from other services. Instagram also recently added a new “Dual” setting to its in-app camera that mimics the shooting style popularized by BeReal.

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