Instagram tests custom stickers created from user photos

The next time you take a memorable picture, you will have the choice to make stickers out of it and include them in your next Reels or Stories on Instagram. First reported by Engadget, the Meta-owned photo-sharing platform is currently testing this feature – one that aims to enhance user creativity and engagement in Instagram’s Stories and Reels.

The feature allows users to transform photos into free-floating stickers by selecting the subject and removing the background. These custom stickers can then be placed atop other content in Instagram’s Stories and Reels. By allowing the transformation of photos into free-floating stickers, users can add a personalized touch to their Stories and Reels, and thus create unique, eye-catching content.

Instagram chief Adam Mosseri recently demonstrated this new feature in a video shared on his broadcast channel. He also revealed that users can create stickers from photos saved on their phones and hinted at the intriguing possibility of crafting stickers from “eligible images you see on Instagram.” As of now, the feature is in a testing phase and has not been rolled out to all users, and is still in development, and its full potential remains to be seen. Instagram is also experimenting with other features, including a new polling feature for feed posts’ comments section.

Custom stickers also provide a means for users to share more about themselves, their interests, and their experiences. Whether it’s using personal photos, artwork, or favorite images, these stickers enable users to convey their unique personalities. Once this feature rolls out, it is hoped that the platform will become an even more personal and expressive space where users can connect on a deeper level by sharing meaningful stickers. The feature can also drive higher user engagement, making Instagram a more vibrant social media platform. It may be likely that the creative nature of custom stickers can even lead to the emergence of viral trends – as users invent and share unique stickers, others may catch on, creating a trend that spreads across the platform. And as it is with viral trends, it can propel user-generated content to the forefront of Instagram, garnering attention and engagement from a wide audience.

When the feature becomes available, Instagram will notify users about it. Once Instagram rolls out the feature, users need to open the Instagram app and create a new Story or Reel. Next, they need to click on the sticker icon and select the “Create” sticker option. Once this is done, they need to choose the picture they want to turn into a sticker, and manually trace around the part of the photo they want as a sticker. Once this is done, they need to tap the “Done” button to have the newly made custom sticker saved in their sticker palette for future use.

Meta has already doubled down on the generative AI trend and has already announced its plans for a host of AI-driven tools and features to its family of apps. These include plans for AI-generated stickers, powered by its language model Llama 2, that will allow users to create custom stickers using text prompts, and which will be accessible on Facebook Stories, Instagram Stories, DMs, Messenger, and WhatsApp. Others include AI image editing features like “restyle” and “backdrop.” Restyle lets users change their photo style using text prompts like “watercolor” or “magazine collage,” while “backdrop” enables users to alter photo backgrounds with text prompts like “beach at sunset.” These exciting features will add another layer of creative possibilities to Instagram.

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