Using Instagram’s basic editor is easy and adds some flair to your stories. But if you want to be extra and add even more creativity, these apps should help.
These are all free but there are monthly and yearly subscriptions that unlock each one’s full potential. It’s not mandatory but it sure helps. Here are the apps in no particular order.
The templates may already be familiar to most of you since Unfold has been used by a lot of people. You can choose from several templates including classic, film, or ripped paper. Inside the app, you can create a “story” and add several pages so you can export them all at once. Aside from changing background color (or texture), you can also add stickers, texts (font selection is a tad limited), and even GIFs.
With Made, you’ll get templates not just limited to classic, film, and ripped paper as there are also travel boards, golden frames, and more. What’s great is the selection of photo filters and page backgrounds — glitters, marble, wood, paper, food, you name it. You can even add your photos as the background proving how versatile the app is. The text editor is a bit tricky as you can’t resize it as freely as Unfold, but its font selection is still a great addition.
Nichi is your best pick if you want your stories to look more like a journal. Aside from various paper textures and organic-looking graphics, you can also change your photo filters between film, polaroid, and other retro-styled choices. The font system isn’t limited to English letters as it supports Korean, Japanese, and Chinese characters. Best of all? The template board isn’t fixed as you can freely resize assets depending on your liking.
Just like Unfold, this app also has the versatility of adding texts and videos. But unlike the apps aforementioned, you get more free fonts, graphics, and templates, even without additional subscription. You can even add your own graphics (such as logos) and install your own fonts — making it more flexible. Each project you make is saved, so that you can re-use the layouts in your future stories.
Canva has been a popular editing website for presentations and print layouts. Now, Canva isn’t limited to computer systems anymore as you can access it across your devices with their app. What’s great with Canva: Stories is the inclusion of free 700 templates and enjoy their quality assets as much as you like. Canva: Stories may not be available yet for the Android system but you can use the regular Canva app as it still has a dedicated Instagram Stories maker with free templates.
The Mojo app is perfect for those who want animated templates — which makes it stand out from the previous apps that all include static layout. There are more than 100 templates to choose from and animated text styles aren’t limited as well. Other than that, you can also customize fonts, colors, sizes, positions, alignments, and many more.
Story Art has huge selections of story templates of more than 1000, including 300+ animated templates. There are also 70+ themes (like film, marble, retro, and minimalism), as well as 100+ highlight covers. Aside from that, it features vintage film filters, and even a VHS camcorder that adds a retro effect to your stories. Just like other layout apps, you can add and customize texts, plus adjust video speed when needed.
There are 500+ static and animated templates alongside 50+ themes (love, summer, travel, memory, among others) when you use StoryChic. Other than that, this app also features several high quality filters to match your story’s mood. There are more than 40 fonts you can select and rotate, plus hundreds of color options and several effects to add context to your stories. Not something most people will use but there’s a blur option for the photos and videos you’ll add.
Just like StoryChic, this app also includes more than 500 photo and video Instagram story templates in various styles such as film, paper, love, collage, and even neon. You can also add backdrop textures to fit your aesthetic. There are 16 fonts that are color customizable. Powerful and unique photo filters are also present, including a vintage selection. Its great reviews prove that you don’t need to break a sweat as its easy and fun to use.
StoryLab consists of over 200 customizable collage and layout templates. You can choose from different styles of frames and borders and supports both photos and videos. Other than that, there are dozens of high-quality background options, even for your highlight cover. Texts, stickers, and filters are the usual features of a layout app but what makes it unique is the inclusion of a unique brush set which you can use to draw over your stories.
Twitch is shutting down in South Korea
By the end of February 2024
Livestreaming has been an entertainment juggernaut since 2020. A lot of users online, especially those stuck at home or who have transitioned to work-from-home lifestyles, have turned to streaming both as viewers and as creators themselves. Unfortunately, in some countries, streaming doesn’t come cheap. If you’re in South Korea or are fans of Korean streamers, the streaming landscape is about to change. Twitch is shutting down in the country.
In a blog post released today, Twitch CEO Dan Clancy announced that the company’s operations in South Korea will stop on February 27. After this date, streamers who made Twitch their community’s home will have to find a new platform.
As a gesture of goodwill, Clancy says that the company will help Korean streamers find a new home — even if it’s not on Twitch — leading up the shutdown date. Currently, YouTube remains a possible destination for streamers.
Operating an online company in South Korea is pricey. Because laws are different in the country, internet service providers can charge companies significantly more for bandwidth usage. Because of the exorbitant costs, “Twitch has been operating in Korea at a significant loss,” Clancy said, leading to the withdrawal.
The death knell has sounded for a while. Last year, the platform downgraded the country’s maximum resolution to only 720p in an attempt to reduce costs. Though a former leader in South Korea’s thriving esports community, Twitch now finds itself on a flight heading out of the country.
Facebook, Instagram will lose cross-platform messaging this month
For an unknown reason
Over the past few years, Meta started integrating its various platforms into one ecosystem. Right now, Facebook and Instagram users can chat with each other on their respective apps. Unfortunately for fans of the cross-communication between the two platforms, Meta is taking the feature away this month.
Through a new support page, Instagram has announced that chatting between the two platforms will no longer be available starting in mid-December. The exact date of the removal is currently unknown, though.
When the undisclosed date arrives, Instagram users cannot start new conversations with Facebook users anymore. Additionally, all existing chats between the two platforms will become read-only, meaning users can’t add new messages to the conversation anymore.
On the flipside, Facebook users will stop seeing the Activity Status of Instagram users from their platform. Cross-platform conversations will not appear on Messenger, either.
Though the support page is conclusive against the feature, Meta has not explicitly explained why Meta changed its current cross-platform plans. It’s still possible that the company will implement a better solution in the future. As it stands, the European Union’s GDPR regulations require large companies to main interoperability between different platforms. Meta is an undeniable example of such a large company.
Strava is getting a much-requested chatting feature
Individual and group chats
What is your fitness app of choice? Though there are a lot of options available now for enthusiasts, it’s undeniable that Strava is making one hell of an impact lately. If you’re a fan of the social fitness app, you’re getting a new feature to boost the social part of Strava.
Today, Strava is getting a substantial messaging feature for users. In the new update, users can start chats with other users in single or group conversations.
It’s a comprehensive feature, too. Chats will include likes and GIF reactions. Additionally, users can configure their options to accept messages only from mutuals or only after they messaged the other person first. Additionally, group chat creators can manage the participants included in the chat.
When compared to other fitness apps today, Strava is arguably leaning more towards the social aspect of the experience. The app allows users to run and hike together as a community. Now, despite how social the core of the app is, it never really allowed users to communicate directly with one another. Users had to rely on external messaging apps just to coordinate with one another.
As of late, Strava continues to pile on more features and integrations with other apps. Earlier this year, the app started allowing users to integrate with Spotify.
SEE ALSO: Spotify can now integrate with Strava
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