One of the most praised features of the latest generation of iPhones is their 3D Touch technology, which senses how much pressure gets applied to the devices’ displays. It lets users preview content without having to open it and can be used to perform quick actions. Now, it appears that Instagram has been testing a near-identical feature in its Android app.
During the brief testing period, the new feature was only available within the app itself and, seeing as Android phones don’t come with pressure-sensitive screens, required a long-press in order to imitate Apple’s 3D Touch system. By holding down on a thumbnail, it was possible to preview a photo without having to open the image up to the entire screen.
Using the feature made the image appear in the foreground while the rest of the page was blurred out. While ‘peeking’ at a photo in this way, it was possible to slide your thumb or finger down the screen to 'like' or 'share' the image, follow the user or leave a comment. Haptic feedback let you know when you had rolled over one of these options.
Instagram for Android’s new feature disappeared only a few hours after it appeared, suggesting that it was just a test that will probably (hopefully) roll out in a future update. Whether this signals the start of other popular Andriod apps introducing the feature, we’ll just have to wait and see. If recent rumors are anything to go by, however, Android app makers won’t need to use long-press to replicate 3D Touch on the next generation of Galaxy phones, as the devices will feature pressure-sensitive screens.