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Instagram Finally Gets Tablet Layout, But for Android Tablets

Instagram just got fixed for Android tablets. Did your IG account get the UI update on your tablet?

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Instagram tablet layout

Instagram is a widely used social media platform with a continually growing user base. While the app functions smoothly on smartphones, tablet users have long been clamoring for a tablet-specific layout that would allow them to make the most of the larger screen size. And Instagram is finally making the wishes come true by releasing a UI for tablets and larger screens. 

Instagram for Android has begun rolling out a new user interface over the past few weeks. This new UI is optimized for larger screens on foldable devices and tablets to make better use of the additional screen real estate. 

The updated layout keeps Stories at the top of the UI and expands the feed to both sides of the display. Reels are still present but with fixed aspect ratios and black bars for padding. The most significant change is the introduction of a side-mounted navigation rail. This new sidebar UI adds notifications and DMs to the list of home, search, new posts, Reels, and profiles. The new look is much more comfortable to use on the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the rest of the Fold series. However, the rollout is happening slowly.

Instagram tablet layout
Image Credit: 9to5Google

Shortly after the announcement of Samsung’s Fold 5, a new update appeared, but it appears to be rolling out on an account-by-account basis. Folks at 9to5Google tested two accounts, but only one showed the new user interface, and switching to the other account removed it. At the beginning, it was assumed to be exclusive to the Galaxy Z Fold series but reports confirm that Instagram’s tablet layout is also working on Google Pixel Tablet when the tablet is in portrait mode. Landscape mode does not seem to be supporting the tablet layout yet. 

Instagram tablet layout
Image Credit: 9to5Google

It is expected that Instagram will make further improvements to its layout to enhance support for wide screens. Currently, the user interface appears to be quite limited in its functionality, and even though it functions on Google’s tablet, it still fails to trigger on Pixel Fold.

Google has been advocating for better support for larger screens, particularly with the increase in popularity of foldable devices and the resurgence of Android tablets. It’s a positive development to see Instagram also taking steps to optimize its platform for larger screens. 

It is somewhat ironic that this optimization is currently available on Android first, given the ongoing demand for an iPad-optimized interface for Instagram on Apple’s tablets. However, it remains to be seen if Instagram will eventually extend this user interface to tablets. Nonetheless, the current UI appears to be well-suited for tablets.

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