“Now you can see what’s happening around you and find stories related to your interests,” Instagram said in a blog post.
This means users who go to Explore will see a story ring at the top filled with stories from their current location. These stories come from users who have used location stickers on their stories.
“You can also transport yourself to any location around the world through search and you'll find a story ring for that place at the top of the location page,” a rep added.
Instagram said it will also begin to introduce hashtag stories on Explore to help users find stories related to their interests.
“When you search for a hashtag, you may see a story ring at the top of the page filled with stories using that hashtag,” the rep added.
Users who add a location sticker or hashtag to their story may be included in the larger story.
“If your story is added, you’ll see a line at the top of your stories’ viewer list showing how many people saw it in the larger story,” Instagram said. “If you want to use a location or hashtag sticker but don’t want your story to appear on Explore, tap the X on your stories’ viewer list.”
Location stories on Explore are available on iOS and Android as part of Instagram version 10.22 in the Apple App Store and Google Play. Hashtag stories will be rolling out over the coming weeks, the platform said.
Location and hashtag stories “bring Explore to life, showing people what's happening around them and helping them to find stories related to their interests, in the moment”, Instagram added.
Instagram said Explore has over 100m daily visitors.