Ephemerality may have been all the rage when Snapchat first hung its hat on the notion of disappearing pictures, but these days, it seems like memories that last are back in vogue. Here to make that happen are two new tools from Instagram that promise to help you “hold onto your favorite moments … and share them in ways that help you express yourself.” First up is Stories Highlights, a new profile section that allows Instagram users to group stories in a highlights reel, and feature them front and center. Then, there is the new Stories Archive, which will automatically save your previously disappearing recordings into a private collection for you to easily relive (and perhaps feature) them.
“Over the past year, Instagram Stories has become a key part of how you express yourself — but there has not been an easy way to keep your stories around for more than 24 hours,” the platform noted in a blog post. “Now you can more fully express your identity by grouping stories you’ve shared into highlights and featuring them on your profile.”
To create a Story Highlight, tap the “New” circle located at the far left of your profile below your biography. Then, you will be able to select any story from your archive, select a cover image for the highlight, and name it. That highlight will then appear to other users as a circle on your profile that can be viewed as a stand-alone story upon a tap. And unlike Stories, which disappear after 24 hours, Highlights stay on your profile until you decide otherwise. Plus, there is no limit to the number of Stories you can highlight (though you may want to exercise some self-control).
When you tire of a certain Story, you only need to tap and hold the highlight to edit or remove it from your profile.
And to ensure that you always have a repository of Stories to choose from, Instagram is also automatically saving all that footage to a personal archive when they expire. To access those older Stories, tap the Archive icon on your profile, where you will find old Stories appear in a grid format, with the most recent videos at the bottom. The first Story from each day will have a date indicator so that you don’t get lost in all your memories. You can always choose to turn off auto-archiving at any time in your profile settings.