Instagram launches new layout app
Photo-sharing service Instagram has launched a new app that will allow users to combine several photos into one.
Called Layout from Instagram, the app enables users to select up to three photos at once and combine them into a single image in a range of layouts. The image-based social network was bought by Facebook in 2012 for one billion US dollars (£669m). As of late 2014, the app had 300 million active users - more than micro-blogging site Twitter.
The new app allows photos to be stitched together in either vertical or horizontal columns. Chosen images can also be flipped upside down or inverted to create the desired effect. Once happy with the result it can be posted to either Instagram or Facebook.
Though there is already a wave of unofficial apps that allow users to create collages of photos to post within the app, this is the first time the service has created such an application to be used natively.
There is also an in-app Photo Booth to capture images while the app is open that can then be used in posts.
Layout is currently only available on Apple's iOS App Store, but Instagram confirmed it would also become available on Android's Google Play store in the "coming months".
In the blog post announcing the launch, Instagram said: "Today we're announcing Layout from Instagram, a new app that lets you easily combine multiple photos into a single image. It's fun, it's simple and it gives you a new way to flex your creativity.
"From imagining mirrored landscapes to sharing multiple moments from an entire adventure, we've seen these kinds of visual storytelling happening on Instagram and we're inspired by it. With Layout, it's easier than ever to unlock your creativity - and we can't wait to see what you'll make next."
Instagram is one is several social apps bought out by Facebook in recent years; the Mark Zuckerberg-founded firm also purchased instant messaging service WhatsApp Messenger last year for 19 billion US dollars (£12.7bn).