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Instagram gains wider colors on iPhone 7, lets you turn Live Photos into Boomerangs

Instagram is rolling out a couple of the exclusive iPhone 7 features first announced at the Apple event in September.

The move sees the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app take advantage of the latest iPhone’s camera to deliver more colorful pics. The backend update, now available to most Instagram users, allows for the capture and display of wide color images.

Additionally, Instagram for iOS is also introducing the ability to convert Live Photos — the seconds-long videos native to the camera app on the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus and iPhone 7 and 7 Plus — into Boomerangs, or Instagram’s brand of back-and-forth GIFs. Users can now upload Live Photos as Boomerangs and insert them into their Instagram Stories with the 3D Touch function (enabled by pressing down on the screen for slightly longer than usual).

Instagram co-founder and CTO Mike Krieger announced the features via Twitter, adding that no update is needed in order to access them on the latest version of the app (10.3).

The iPhone 7 packs a 12-megapixel camera that features optical image stabilization, a 28mm wide-angle lens with a f/1.8 aperture, and a high-speed sensor that’s 60 percent faster than before. The iPhone 7 Plus, on the other hand, packs a dual camera — this one has a 56mm-telephoto lens with an f/2.8 aperture. It’s a capable little bugger on its own, but more importantly, it’s an open one: third-party apps and software can readily leverage its picture-taking prowess.

More: iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus: Everything you need to know

Back in September, it was revealed that future versions of Instagram will take advantage of the iPhone 7 Plus’s telephoto lens for optical zooming. As a result, Instagram photographers with the iPhone 7 Plus will be able to zoom into scenes by dragging a finger anywhere within the viewfinder. Haptic feedback will indicate how far they’ve zoomed (a feature more important than it sounds), as the iPhone 7 Plus’s sensor switches from an optical zoom to grainier, noisier digital zoom at 2x magnification. Being able to know just when to turn will no doubt prove useful. However, this feature is still in the pipeline.

Related: Go vertical: Portrait orientation is no longer the scourge of photo and video

Instagram on the iPhone 7 was also said to be gaining redesigned color filters. As Instagram Head of Design Ian Spalter demonstrated on the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium stage in September, the iPhone 7’s improved color-capturing ability necessitates a subtle selection of filters. Spalter said the reworked library should result in Instagram edits that are more “vibrant” and “vivid” than ever before. Again, there was no word from Krieger on this feature either.

Updated 01/06/2017 by Saqib Shah: Added news of availability of select new iOS features