It wasn't long ago that Instagram introduced stories, allowing photos and video to be recorded with text added and shown as temporary messages to your followers, separate from the main photo feed. Like Snapchat. Now you can also save a copy of your own stories as you post them. Like Snapchat. You can also now mute the stories of anyone you follow too if you only want to see their main posts but not their stories.
The new features have just been released in the latest update of the app. The setting to save a copy of any story that you create is in the Options menu, under Story Settings. It is simply a toggle switch, so you can either save all stories that you post or none of them rather than choosing for each one, and you can save individual elements of stories like just the video or photo that was part of that story. With the aim of taking away the frustration of creating a story then never being able to view it again, the copy is saved to the photo storage in your phone rather than within Instagram itself. Another small change to the functionality of stories is the ability to change the color of the text that you add to your stories.
To mute the stories of someone you already follow, simply hold down on their icon at the top of your homepage until a small window appears with the options to either view their profile or mute their story. If you choose to mute it, you will see their story icon move to the far right of your list and it will be grayed out. It will then never display automatically as you view the other stories. To unmute it again, hold down on their icon again until the unmute option appears and it will return to its original place. These are useful small additions as Instagram develops its functionality for temporary posts. It's easy to access, and gives you the useful option of retaining the posts of other users in your main feed but blocking their stories from appearing. The changes do feel like another step towards Snapchat functionality but that isn't necessarily a criticism and the new features do allow you to tailor your Instagram experience that little bit more.