Facebook Turns to Instagram to Drive Engagement of Facebook Stories

Instagram is currently testing a new feature that allows users to share new Instagram Stories directly to their Facebook account. The feature, first reported by Mashable, appears to be Facebook’s latest attempt to increase the visibility of Stories in its main app, essentially by getting users of its more visual-oriented Instagram network to double-post stories as Facebook Stories.

As part of the test, which is likely only a partial rollout for now, Instagram users see a new option to share their newly captured photos and videos as a Facebook Story as well as an Instagram Story, according to screenshots posted to Twitter.

The experiment appears to suggest that Facebook Stories, which the company launched in April, have failed to be a hit with the social media network’s users. Like Snapchat and Instagram Stories before them, Facebook Stories let users post a picture or video onto their feed, which disappears 24 hours later.

Facing poor adoption of a feature that appears at the top of the news feed, Facebook initially tweaked the UI to look less bereft by showing ghost-like, grayed-out profile pictures of friends, regardless of whether they’ve ever posted a Facebook Story. But it looks like that hasn’t had much effect either.

By contrast, Instagram Stories enjoy high engagement and are reportedly used by 250 million people daily. In fact, Instagram’s success has allowed it to remain largely free of encroachment from its parent company until now, so Facebook’s attempt to siphon off some of that success to its core app implies this could be a last-ditch attempt to save Facebook Stories before the feature’s removed for good.

You can follow iPhoneFirmware.com on Twitter, add us to your circle on Google+ or like our Facebook page to keep yourself updated on all the latest from Apple and the Web.