In this article, we’re going to teach you how to use Instagram on a computer. On both the app and the website, you can read and reply to your messages, check out Instagram stories, view your feed, comment and like, and look through the Explore page.
The only thing that you can’t do is post to your own feed through a desktop. However, we will talk about an application that you can install so that you can upload content to your feed through your computer. Let’s dive in.
Using Instagram on Your Computer
- Go to Instagram in your web browser. You can use Instagram on your desktop for everything except posting content to your feed.
- Enter your account information to log in. This is going to sign you into your Instagram profile, and from here you will be able to see your feed, as well as the feeds of others. If you are using Facebook to sign into your Instagram, you can select ‘log in with Facebook’ instead and follow the instructions that come up on the screen. If you don’t have an Instagram profile yet, select ‘sign up’ and follow the prompts.
- Go through your feed. You can use your browser’s scroll bars to go through your feed. You can also search for users by typing in their username in the search bar that you will see at the top of your page. You can go back to your feed from anywhere on Instagram by selecting the house icon that you will find at the top of your page to the right.
- Select the heart icon underneath a post to like it. This is going to tell the person that posted the piece of content that you like what they have uploaded.
- Choose the speech bubble underneath a piece of content to add a comment. Unless a user has disabled comments on their uploads, you should see this icon right next to the heart below an image or video. You can use this to add a comment. Just enter your text into the text box that comes up. When you have finished writing, select ‘enter’ to share.
- Choose the paper airplane icon to share a post. If you want to share a post that you have found while scrolling through your feed, then select the paper airplane icon that you will see. Select ‘share to direct’ to share the post with another Instagram user. You can also choose ‘copy link’ to copy a link of the post, so that you can paste it elsewhere online. You can choose any other social media network that you’ve got to share it.
- Select the compass to check out the Explore Page. You will see an icon of a compass at the top of your page to the right. This is going to let you check out recommended and trending Instagram posts from people who you aren’t following.
- Check out your notifications. You can do this with another icon that you will find at the top of your feed to the right. Select the heart icon to the left of your account to see recent comments, likes and follows that you have received from others.
- Select the paper airplane button to see all of your direct messages. This is at the top of the screen to the right. To read a message, select the sender’s name that you will see to the left. To reply to a message, enter your response at the bottom, then select ‘enter’. To respond with an image, select the icon of an image at the bottom of the message, choose an image from your desktop, then select ‘open’. To send someone a brand-new message, select the pencil icon that you will see at the top of the panel to the left. Choose the recipient, select ‘next’, and start writing your message.
- Check out your stories. Your stories will be at the top of your feed, which you can look at by choosing the house icon that you see at the top of the page to the right. Select any of the circles that you see to view stories.
- Manage and view your profile. To see your own feed, select your profile picture and choose ‘profile’. To edit your profile, choose ‘edit profile’ which you will see at the top of your page. To adjust any settings, select the gear icon that you will see at the top of your profile. This is also where you will be able to log out by choosing ‘log out’.
Using BlueStacks to Post Videos and Photos
- Go to BlueStacks in your web browser. If you need to be able to share content on your computer, then you will need to install BlueStacks. It is free and easy to use.
- Select the green button that says ‘download bluestacks’. This will be in the middle of your page, but you might have to scroll down a bit to see it. If the installation doesn’t automatically begin, select ‘download’ or ‘save’ when asked.
- Install BlueStacks. Double-click on the file that you have just installed, then follow the instructions that will come up on your screen. If it doesn’t come up automatically, you can find it in the Start menu. It might take a minute or so to get started.
- Sign into your Google account. Just like setting up a tablet or phone for Android, you will be asked to enter your password and username to sign in.
- Select the ‘my apps’ tab. This is to the left of the BlueStacks window.
- Open the Google Play Store. You will see it on the home screen.
- Enter ‘Instagram’ into the search bar and then select ‘enter’. You can find the search bar at the top of the window to the right. A list of results will come up.
- Select ‘install’. This is the blue button that you can find at the right bottom corner of the Instagram file. Select ‘accept’ if asked.
- Select ‘open’ when the installation has finished. This is a green button that will be in the same place that the ‘install’ button was. This is going to open your Instagram.
- Log into your Instagram account. Enter your credentials, and then you can start using Instagram like normal through BlueStacks.
- Select the plus sign to create a new post. This is at the bottom of your screen in the middle.
- Select ‘other’ from the menu that drops down. This opens the ‘open from’ menu.
- Select ‘pick from windows’ that will be on the left panel. This will open your file selector. If prompted, allow the file selector to have access to your files.
- Select a video or photo and choose ‘open’. This is going to upload the image to your Google account, so that you can add it to your Instagram post. This upload might take a little while, depending on how big it is. If you don’t automatically go back to Instagram after the upload, select the Instagram tab that you will see at the top. If you can’t see this, select the house tab at the bottom to go back to the home screen. Reopen Instagram and select the plus sign to create a new post. You should then be able to select your file to upload.
- Select ‘next’. This is at the top of the page to the right.
- Edit your post and select ‘next’. You have the option of adding a filter at this point or editing your image.
- Enter other details of your post and then select ‘share’. Type a caption or description in the area at the top of the app, then add tags and a location if you want to. Then, select ‘share’.