November 30, 2018 / 10:09 AM / in 9 days

Instagram's new feature allows users to share stories with smaller group

FILE PHOTO: Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to a screen projection of Instagram logo in this picture illustration taken March 28, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

(Reuters) - Facebook Inc’s Instagram said on Friday it launched a new feature dubbed “Close Friends” allowing users to share their stories with a smaller group of people.

The new feature, which will appear on the user’s profile in the side menu enables Instagram’s more than 1 billion users to create a smaller group of friends and share stories exclusively with the group.

“If you’re on someone’s close friends list, you’ll see a green ring around their photo in the Stories tray and a green badge when you’re viewing their stories,” Instagram said in a statement to Reuters.

Facebook has been focusing on Instagram, its fastest-growing revenue generator, as the social networking website’s core platform has come under fire from regulators pushing to improve information safeguards for individual privacy, to combat addiction to social media, and to stop misinformation or fake news.

In October, Instagram appointed long-term insider Adam Mosseri as the head of the photo-sharing app following the high-profile exits of the photo-sharing app’s co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger.

Rival Snap Inc owner of Snapchat, which faces stiff competition from Instagram has been redesigning the app to lure more users and advertisers. Snap also bagged a $250 million investment from Saudi Arabia’s Prince Alwaleed bin Talal as it shifted toward a self-serve model for advertisers.

Reporting by Paresh Dave in San Francisco and Laharee Chatterjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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