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CAPE TOWN - The year 2017 has been good to Instagram as it currently has around 800 million daily active users. 

The success of the photo-sharing platform are the developers, who continue to surprise users with new features regularly. 

ALSO READ: Instagram adds a few new features

More features are being tested for the app as well, such as:

  • The ability to archive your stories and it appears you'll be able to set Instagram to do that automatically. 
  • A feature called the Regram button, which would let users repost others' photos and videos without having to turn to a third-party app.
  • Some other tests include a GIF search for stories

Keep in mind, just because these features are being tested, does not mean they will become official features.

Here is a list of official features that were released this year:

1. Live Stories

On Instagram Stories, users can now go live and interact with their followers in real time.

Since the audience can write comments, this new feature serves as a great way for influencers to interact with their audience directly. The live videos disappear when the video is finished but you can save it to your phone if you want to view it or share it again. 

You can also include a friend in your live video. While going live, you can select a friend to join you and the screen will split in 2. 

ALSO READ: WATCH: Instagram's new live stream feature

2. Adding Multiple photos

This feature allows you to include up to ten photos or videos in one post.

By swiping left, the followers can go through the slideshow. The tool offers manifold benefits: The feature can be used for before and after pictures, to show how a product is used, as a step-by-step guide for recipes or makeup tutorials, or to highlight details of a product and show it in all its facets. 

3. Paid partnership tool 

According to Instagram, the tool was created to make commercial relationships on Instagram more transparent.

Instagram claims that partnerships between community creators and businesses are important to them.That a healthy community should be open and consistent about paid partnerships. Influencers who cooperate with brands can simply tag the company and the ‘Paid partnership with the company’ badge will appear above. 

The feature works for regular Instagram posts as well as in Instagram Stories. Brands also get to use the insights to their advantage and see how popular their products are. 

ALSO READ: How Instagram can help market our business

4. Polls 

By using the sticker option, users can ask questions in Instagram stories and either provide a yes or no answer or even customize the sticker to give their followers options to choose from. 

After voting, the result will be displayed. You can see who voted and which option was most popular.  For influencers and brands, this new feature is a great way to learn more about the taste and preferences of their followers.