Check Out Your New Favorite Instagram Feature

Photo: Courtesy Instagram.
Browsing through Instagram can unearth a lot of crappy photos — if you don't know the right hashtag to search, that is. With the platform's latest update, however, exploring the treasure trove of fashion, food, and travel pics secretly lurking on Instagram just got way easier (and not just because of emoji).

The best part about Instagram 7.0, available today on iOS and Android, is that it makes you actually want to tap the app's Explore tab (that magnifying-glass icon on the lower left). Now, Explore surfaces trending tags and places, so you can see what's happening at #Bonnaroo or the #CFDA awards, or check out what #beach everyone is lounging on this summer. At the top of the Explore page, you'll also see hand-curated image collections, such as "Extreme Athletes" and "Ancient Ruins."

Instagram has also improved its general search functionality. If you're trying to scope out a particular spot (a new restaurant downtown or a potential vacation destination), you can more easily see photos that pertain to that place.

With these new search and explore features, Instagram is no longer just a place to share and like photos. It now has more of a Pinterest — or even a Yelp — vibe, helping you use its photos to make plans and decisions. And, who knows: Maybe your beach snaps will get featured, and get you a bevy of new followers in return.

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