Fingers crossed you’re in the test group!
Sometimes it seems like I’ve lived three lifetimes since the posts on my Instagram feed were in chronological order. But that’s all about to change, because on Jan. 5, Instagram head Adam Mosseri announced a rollout of three new feed options — including two that finally let you view your feed chronologically again. For the best throwback, here’s how you can make your Instagram feed chronological.
In case you forgot what life used to be like on IG, let me refresh your memory: The year was 2015. Instagram showed you posts in chronological order, starting with the most recent. You never missed a post from anyone. Then, in 2016, the company ditched chronological posts in favor of presenting users with posts at the top of their feed they were more likely to engage with. The algorithmic feed change was met with pushback almost immediately, but the backlash never prompted IG to revert back to the old feed. Until now, that is.
On Jan. 5, Instagram head Adam Mosseri posted a video to his own IG account to inform users the company would soon begin testing new ways to consume your feed. Mosseri explains in the video that the test will include three different feeds: Home, Favorites, and Following. For those who want to see posts from all the accounts you follow in chronological order, the Following feed is where you’ll need to be.
To view your feed chronologically, first check if you’re in the test. To do that, open the home page of Instagram and look to the top-left side of the screen. Tap on the cursive Instagram logo. If you have the test, you’ll see the word “Home” in bold letters and a drop-down menu with “Home,” “Following,” “Favorites,” and “Manage Favorites.”
Select the Following feed to see posts in (mostly) chronological order. As its name suggests, the Following feed is reserved just for accounts you follow, which means you won’t get any unwanted content from suggested posts. Sounds like a sweet deal to me.
The other way to get a chronological yet pared-down feed is to choose Favorites. It’s a specialized feed that also organizes posts chronologically from accounts you’ve marked as Favorites, which you can adjust when you go to Manage Favorites from the drop-down menu. You can include people you know IRL like your friends and family, as well as your favorite creators, artists, musicians, and more.
According to Mosseri’s Jan. 5 post, these tests are “already out, or going out over the next couple of weeks,” so if you don’t have if right away, keep your eye out for any changes to your account.
The feed most similar to the Instagram experience you know today is the Home feed, which means you’ll see posts based on how interested the algorithm thinks you will be in them. According to Mosseri, Home is going to have “more and more” recommended posts over time, so keep that in mind when you’re scrolling on your lunch break.
If you don’t see the test pop up in your account, don’t stress. In his caption, Mosseri wrote, “If all goes well we hope to launch this in the first half of the year.” Fingers crossed that means you’ll have the option for a chronological feed again by June.