Instagram may soon adopt voice and video calling features if files discovered in the app’s Android Application Packages (APKs) are any indication.
The files, first tipped by TechCrunch, are labeled “call” and “video call” with matching phone and video camera icons. APKs contain all of an app’s code and can often serve as storage for new features before they launch publicly.
Assuming Instagram does roll out the new communication features, it would make the app an even greater threat to Snapchat. As The Verge highlights, Snapchat already has video calling but it isn’t frictionless. Adding those features to Instagram and making them seamless to access would give users even less of a reason to leave the Instagram app.
Plus, now would be the perfect time for Instagram to strike as Snapchat is reeling from a redesign that didn’t exactly go over well with users. If you recall, more than 1.2 million people signed a Change.org petition asking the company to roll back the redesign. Snap eventually replied, acknowledging that many felt uncomfortable with the change and highlighting a few additional changes in the pipeline.
Evidence of a video call button in Instagram surfaced in January but it was thought at the time to be only for internal testing purposes. Now that evidence has made its way to the public APK, however, it’s hard to deny its existence.