Instagram chief says iPad market isn't 'big enough' for native app

Posted:
in iPad
An Instagram app for the iPad is still far away from materializing, after the head of the Meta-owned social app says there isn't "big enough" support from users to make it.




For years, Instagram has refused to release an iPadOS version of its app, forcing iPad users into using the iPhone version on the larger tablet display. In tweets on Sunday, Instagram chief Adam Mosseri insists it's not going to happen in the near future.

Responding to a tweet by YouTuber Marques Brownlee about the lack of an iPad app, Mosseri acknowledges "Yup, we get this one a lot," but that it's not on the way. "It's still just not a big enough group of people to be a priority," states Mosseri.

While the team is "hoping to get to it at some point," Mosseri says "right now we're very heads down on other things."

When pressed by MKBHD that the group size would increase if a native app was available, Mosseri agrees it would. However, he adds that there are a number of reasons for the lack of focus, such as an increase in overhead cost.

Shortform video competitors such as TikTok and YouTube are also seen as "behemoths," with users sharing "more in messages than they do to Stories or Feed," prompting a "need to adapt." Mosseri also says there's the size of the team to consider, as "we are leaner than you think."

Yup, we get this one a lot. It's still just not a big enough group of people to be a priority. Hoping to get to it at some point, but right now we're very heads down on other things.

-- Adam Mosseri (@mosseri)


Despite the continued lack of progress, Mosseri does say it could arrive someday. Referring to "finally features," an iPad app is included along with features that may eventually see the light of day, such as "supporting dark mode, scheduled posts," and "deleting one photo from a carousel."

The list of "finally features" seems to include items that could feasibly be worked on by a small number of determined developers. The team may be "leaner than you think," but it also has the considerable resources of Meta behind it, so expanding the team or getting temporary assistance shouldn't be an issue.

By contrast, the photography app Glass has a relatively small team with lean resources. Yet just over half a year after launching, it has managed to offer a fully-featured iPad app to its users.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,895member
    LOL, what? iPad is the dominant platform for tablets.  Not big enough?  Apple is selling about 50 million iPads a year, and it's roughly 30% of the tablet market.  This excuse is bullish*t.  Insta's parent company is a trillion dollar behemoth.  You can't develop an effing iPad app?  Oh, OK.  
    byronlITGUYINSDSpitbathwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 10
    danoxdanox Posts: 1,174member
    If it’s not leave iOS please…..
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 10
    sdw2001 said:
    LOL, what? iPad is the dominant platform for tablets.  Not big enough?  Apple is selling about 50 million iPads a year, and it's roughly 30% of the tablet market.  This excuse is bullish*t.  Insta's parent company is a trillion dollar behemoth.  You can't develop an effing iPad app?  Oh, OK.  
    Millions of iPads does not automatically translate to millions of Instagram users on those iPads.  If it did, a data harvesting company like Meta would already have jumped on it.  Since they haven't, they aren't seeing a lot of use on iPads.  It's possible that developing an iPad app would increase iPad usage; obviously Meta doesn't think the ROI is worth it.
    williamlondongrandact73
  • Reply 4 of 10
    sdw2001 said:
    LOL, what? iPad is the dominant platform for tablets.  Not big enough?  Apple is selling about 50 million iPads a year, and it's roughly 30% of the tablet market.  This excuse is bullish*t.  Insta's parent company is a trillion dollar behemoth.  You can't develop an effing iPad app?  Oh, OK.  
    Millions of iPads does not automatically translate to millions of Instagram users on those iPads.  If it did, a data harvesting company like Meta would already have jumped on it.  Since they haven't, they aren't seeing a lot of use on iPads.  It's possible that developing an iPad app would increase iPad usage; obviously Meta doesn't think the ROI is worth it.
    Have you tried IG on an iPad?  It's no wonder "not enough" iPad people are using it.  

    How much could it possibly cost to modify the iPhone code to optimize the display for the iPad?  I'm guessing not much.  There aren't many other developers refusing to adapt their apps to iPad because it costs too much.  BS.
    Spitbathwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 10
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,605member
    I am a heavy iPad user, but an example of an iPad that won’t have Instagram.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 10
    Like porting the app to iPad is really that tough. Come on. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 10
    palegolaspalegolas Posts: 1,350member
    They're waiting for the 20" iPad. That'll be big enough ;-)
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 10
    ITGUYINSD said:
    sdw2001 said:
    LOL, what? iPad is the dominant platform for tablets.  Not big enough?  Apple is selling about 50 million iPads a year, and it's roughly 30% of the tablet market.  This excuse is bullish*t.  Insta's parent company is a trillion dollar behemoth.  You can't develop an effing iPad app?  Oh, OK.  
    Millions of iPads does not automatically translate to millions of Instagram users on those iPads.  If it did, a data harvesting company like Meta would already have jumped on it.  Since they haven't, they aren't seeing a lot of use on iPads.  It's possible that developing an iPad app would increase iPad usage; obviously Meta doesn't think the ROI is worth it.
    Have you tried IG on an iPad?  It's no wonder "not enough" iPad people are using it.  

    How much could it possibly cost to modify the iPhone code to optimize the display for the iPad?  I'm guessing not much.  There aren't many other developers refusing to adapt their apps to iPad because it costs too much.  BS.
    I'm sure you're intimately familiar with the IG source code, so I'll defer to your obvious expertise in the matter.
  • Reply 9 of 10
    jSnivelyjSnively Posts: 365administrator
    For a bit of context, even on a site like ours (whose primary audience consists of apple fans, so you would assume it would skew higher in iPad use than most), tablet usage overall last year made up ~4% of traffic according to analytics.
    muthuk_vanalingambeowulfschmidt
  • Reply 10 of 10
    I have an iPad but I generally read Apple Insider when I’m in places I can only use my iPhone. I’m sure Instagram has a ton of people doom scrolling it on iPads they’re just doing it on the website which does not prevent cross site tracking etc. 

    I think it ultimately boils down to the people who make Instagram are lazy, and probably not that talented (the app chews through battery despite not doing much more than loading a stream of photos.) Same thing with the Facebook app. 

    I think the people at Meta like the idea of Android having higher market share so they do the bare minimum on iOS to keep their user base happy. 

    Either way, their own research has even shown that Instagram is terrible for people’s mental health. So why even want their app on the iPad? 
Sign In or Register to comment.