You would like to post some photos you took with your digital camera on Instagram , but Does the mere idea of having to carry photos from your computer to your smartphone make you hives? From time to time you would like to access Instagram even from your PC, so that you can view the latest content posted by your friends and comment on them, but you don’t know how to do it? Don’t worry, it’s child’s play!
Instagram offers a Web version of its service, which is accessible from any program to browse on the Internet and works on any device, even computers. Through this Web version you can view your friends’ photos, videos and stories, comment on them, add them to your favorites and much more.
It is also possible to search for new content, modify your profile and – through a little trick that I will show you shortly – even post photos on Instagram from your PC. The same goes for the official social network application available for PCs with Windows 10. Don’t you believe it? Then take five minutes of free time and read on. We are going to find out together how to use Instagram on your PC .
How to use Instagram on your PC
If you agree, let’s get straight to the point and let’s see how to use Instagram on your PC , analyzing more closely the functioning of its Web version, its application for Windows 10 and – if these solutions are not enough for you – the use of some software to emulate the Android version of Instagram on your computer.
How to use Instagram Web
If you want to know how to use Instagram Web, that is the version of Instagram that can be used via browser, all you have to do is connect to the Instagram.com site, type in the appropriate text fields phone number, username or e-mail and password associated with your account and click the Login button to complete the login. If you have previously activated two-factor authentication, please also enter the code in the appropriate text field and click on the Confirm button.
If, on the other hand, you usually access Instagram using your Facebook account and not a combination of username and dedicated password, you can log in using the access credentials of the famous social network by clicking on the button Log in with Facebook .
If when you connect to Instagram, the site “recognizes” you automatically (as you have already saved your Facebook login credentials in your browser or you have previously logged in to Instagram.com), all you have to do is confirm your identity by pressing the appropriate button and start using the service.
Once logged in, a page will open with the latest photos posted by the users you follow on Instagram and usual interaction options: the heart icon to add “likes” , the button depicting the comic to read and send comments , the airplane symbol to send the post via Direct.
The icon (…) at the top right, however, if clicked, it allows you to embed the selected photo in external sites (via HTML code), share content on other platforms, report any inappropriate content, copy the link of the post, etc.
To view a photo in a larger format and read the complete list of comments left under it, click on the date of publication of the post , at the bottom left ( eg 11 hours ago for a photo posted 11 hours ago). By clicking on the name of the user who posted the photo, you can access his Instagram profile, while clicking on the name of the location where the photo was taken (where present), you can view a list of all recent photos posted on Instagram from that location.
To search for new photos on Instagram you can use the search bar at the top, thanks to which you can find user profiles , photos linked to a specific hashtag (words or phrases preceded by the
# symbol that are used to index the contents on the platform, as I explained to you in this other article) and photos taken in a specific location .
For example, typing Salvatore Aranzulla results will appear that will allow you to find my personal profile on Insta gram (salvatorearanzulla) and photos that have the hashtag
#salvatorearanzulla . Similarly, looking for the name of a city, for example Milan , you will find both the photos taken in that location and the photos that contain the hashtag
Another way to search for new photos on Instagram.com is displaying the list of suggested profiles, that is a list of users to follow that Instagram automatically prepares for us based on the profiles we already follow. To view this list, all you have to do is click on the house icon at the top right (if you are not already in the Instagram home), and click on the item Show all located on the right, in correspondence with the wording Suggestions for you .
Once the web page is displayed relating to the profile of a specific Instagram account, you can start following him by clicking on the Follow button located in correspondence with his username and, if it is a public profile, browse all the photos he has published on his account having the opportunity to comment on them and add them to your favorites, after having enlarged them by clicking on the relative thumbnails . In the case of a private profile, to do this you will first have to wait for the user to accept your request to follow him.
As for the stories, the Web version of Instagram allows you to view and interact with them: just go to home of the social network (by clicking on the house icon at the top right) and click on the profile photos of the users who have created new ones. More info here.
As already mentioned above, the Web version of Instagram also allows you to manage your account and information related to this last. In fact, by clicking on the thumbnail of your profile photo and selecting the word Profile , you can go to your profile.
Once on your profile, click on the Edit profile button (top right) you can change all the data relating to the latter: name , username , website , biography , e-mail , telephone number , etc.
From the menu for editing your profile, by selecting the options in the left sidebar, you can also change your profile password (by clicking on Change password ), manage applications and associated services to your account (by clicking on Apps and websites ), adjust your preferences for receiving information emails from Instagram ( Email and SMS ), and much more.
From the same menu you can even deactivate or delete your account , but I dealt with that better in my tutorial on how to delete accounts Instagram.
Like the smartphone app, the Web version of Instagram also allows you to view all likes, comments and other notifications linked to their photos. How? Simple, by clicking on the heart icon located at the top right and consulting the box that opens.
If you want to know how to use Direct Instagram on PC , using the Web version of the photographic social network, know that it is very simple: just click on the paper airplane symbol located at the top right, click on the Send message button located on the right, look in the field text A the username of the person to send a message to and click on Next .
In the new page opened, type the message you want to send to the person in the text field Write a message … located at the bottom right , and hit Enter on the keyboard to forward it. By clicking on the smiley face icon located to the left of the message typing bar, you can recall the emojis; by clicking on the postcard symbol on the right, instead, you can send an image by uploading it from your computer.
As for the possibility of posting photos , you should know that the operation is feasible, albeit by resorting to some “Magheggio”. What you have to do, in fact, is to “trick” the Instagram site and make it believe that you are visiting it from a smartphone or tablet. How? Simple, by changing the user agent of your browser.
If you have never heard of it, the user agent is a string that the browser communicates to the sites you visit and that identifies both the program and the system in use. Well, by changing this string, it is possible to “deceive” the sites you visit and make them believe they are using a smartphone or tablet instead of a PC. The operation is very simple to put into practice and is reversible at any time. To learn more and find out in detail how to change the user agent of your browser, follow the instructions below.
- Chrome – install the User-Agent Switcher extension, open a new browser tab and visit the Instagram site. Then click on the sheet with the black mask icon located at the top right and select the user agent of a portable device (eg. iOS> iPad) from the menu that opens. To restore the default user agent of Chrome (this is necessary after using Instagram in mobile mode), select the Chrome> Default item from the User-Agent Switcher menu.
– install the User-Agent Switcher extension, open a new browser tab and visit the Instagram site. Then click on the globe icon located at the top right, in the box that opens, select an icon from the Select a mobile device section (e.g. the icon Apple or Android ) and reload the page. To restore the default Firefox user agent (this is necessary after using Instagram in mobile mode), click again on the globe icon and select the check mark that you find at the bottom of the box that opens.
Now you can proceed with uploading the content from your PC. Then click on the (+) icon located at the bottom center of the main Instagram page and select the content you want to post on your profile.
At this point, use the icon with the two arrows located on the left to activate or deactivate the zoom of the image and / or the icon with the two circular arrows on the right to rotate the photo. By clicking on the Filters tab, located at the bottom left, you can even apply presets to the image.
To conclude, click on the Next item located at the top right, type a description and the hashtag that you want to associate with the photo in the appropriate text field and click on the Share button to post the content.
As an alternative to the previously mentioned solution, to publish photos and videos on Instagram from PC you can use the Creator Studio tool of Facebook , available for those who have a corporate Instagram account connected to a Facebook page.
Through the tool in question it is, in fact, possible to post on your Feed of Instagram (and also on IGTV) multimedia contents, choosing them from the memory of your computer. In this regard, for more information about it, I suggest you read my tutorial in which I tell you about how it works in more detail.
It is not possible, however, to create new stories: at the moment, this possibility is relegated to the mobile app only.
How to use Instagram for Windows 10
As already mentioned above, Instagram has long since released an application for Windows 10 that allows you to take advantage of all the features of the online version of the service. If you want to use Instagram for Windows 10 , know that the application in question works the same way as its web counterpart. In this chapter, therefore, I’ll just show you how to install it on your PC: as for use, you can refer to what I have already told you, since there are no differences from Instagram Web.
To download Instagram for Windows 10, linked to this page and, if necessary, click on the Get button to allow the opening of the Microsoft Store. Then click on the Get button in the store and wait for the application to be installed. At the end of the process, click on the Start button to open it.
In the window that has opened, click on the Accept button to accept Instagram cookies and, after logging in, use the application following the same instructions I gave you in the previous chapter.
How to emulate Instagram on PC
A third way to use the desktop photo social network is to emulate Instagram on your PC , using software that allows you to emulate Android on your computer and then run the Instagram app for smartphones directly from your PC.
There are several Android emulators, both for Windows and macOS, even free, and allow you to run the Instagram app without any problem. One of the most famous emulators out there is BlueStacks . To use it, go to its official website and click on the green button Download Bluestacks (top right).
When the download is complete, if you use Windows , open the .exe file you obtained and press the Yes , Install Now buttons and wait for the procedure to finish (it may take a few minutes).
If you are using a Mac instead, open the .dmg file you have obtained, double click on the BlueStacks Installer icon visible on the screen and, in case you are asked to confirm the ‘opening the application, do it by pressing the Open button. Next, click on the Install Now button, type your macOS admin password and click on the Install Assistant button.
In conclusion, click on the button Open system preferences / Open Security and privacy , click on the button Allow , click on the padlock symbol (at the bottom left of the window that opened), type the macOS administrator password again and click on the button Unblock .
Now, after installing and starting BlueStacks, log in to your Google account: click on Register , on Login , specify in the appropriate text fields the e-mail address and the password of your account and press the buttons Next and I agree to move on.
After that, start the Play Store , by clicking on its icon located in the Home section, search for the Instagram app using the appropriate search bar , click on the result relevant and start the installation of the same, by clicking on the Install button.
For the rest, there is no is a lot to say: since the Instagram app interface is exactly what you see in the Android app, you can use it as you already do on your mobile device. More info here.
Salvatore Aranzulla is the most widely read blogger and IT popularizer in Italy. He is known for discovering vulnerabilities in Google and
Microsoft. He collaborates with computer magazines and edited the technological column of the newspaper Il Messaggero. He is the founder of Aranzulla.it, one of the
thirty most visited sites in Italy, in which he responds with simplicity to thousands of computer-related doubts. He has published for Mondadori and