On the heels of its recent Stories update, Facebook-owned Instagram has added low light improvements for photos and videos captured within the Stories interface. But even more notable is the fact that you can now use pinch-to-zoom on photos and videos in the feed, on profiles, and in the Explore tab.

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The update, version 9.2, is now available for download on the App Store. You may have to force close the app for the pinch-to-zoom properties to show up.

Stories gets improved low light performance

Instagram’s freshly-minted Stories feature receives a new low light button that dynamically shows up when capturing a photo or video in less than ideal lightning conditions. Users will still have to invoke the low light button, which looks very similar to Apple’s Do Not Disturb button in iOS, in order to improve low light shots.

Instagram Stories Low light capture

Instagram Stories’ new dynamic low light capture button

Pinch-to-zoom

By far the biggest new feature in version 9.2 is the introduction of pinch-to-zoom, a first for Instagram. Pinch-to-zoom works just as one would expect, though I find it a little odd considering the low resolution of most of the content found on the service. Users can use pinch-to-zoom in a variety of places, including within the feed, on profiles, and in the Explore tab. Pinch-to-zoom even works for in-motion videos.

Pinch-to-zoom appears to be a server-side update, which explains why the feature doesn’t show up in the 9.2 release notes. Again, you may need to force-close the Instagram app before pinch-to-zoom becomes available to you.

Bug fixes and improvements

Obligatory bug fixes and improvements are to be found in Instagram 9.2 as well. The Menlo Park, CA company specifically states that Instagram Stories should benefit from the refinements.

Instagram Stories walkthrough

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It’s a little jarring that you can now zoom in on Instagram photos and videos, but to be honest, I kind of like it. What say you?

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