Instagram adds emoji shortcuts to make commenting easier



has added an emoji shortcut bar to make commenting quicker and easier on the app.

Now, rather than having to search through your emoji keyboard for the right one, Instagram will serve up a list for you, the firm


The app shows a handy bar at the bottom of the screen that includes your most-used emojis.

The feature has been in public testing since May, according to

the Verge.


it just became available to all Android and iOS users starting on Thursday.

The emoji toolbar only shows up when a user is commenting on another person's photo.

It won't appear in other parts of the app, such as when users caption a photo, respond to an Instagram Stories post, or direct message another user.

Many users are likely to find the feature helpful, given that it's become common to leave a comment with just emojis.

Instagram cautioned that the feature isn't meant to encourage 'emoji spam,' or the act of attempting to grow your follower account by commenting on as many photos as possible.

'It's not meant to replace the act of commenting, but make it easier for you to add emoji to your comments,' an Instagram spokesperson told


The move comes as Instagram has been weighing the idea of launching a separate app focused around shopping.

The app, which could be called 'IG Shopping,' would serve as an effort to extend Instagram's growing influence in the e-commerce market.

It would also allow users to browse and buy products from retailers they follow directly within the IG Shopping app.

Development of the app is still ongoing and it's unclear when or if it will ever launch.

More and more consumers are using the Instagram app to keep in touch with their favorite brands.

Four in five Instagrammers already follow at least one business, according to the Verge.

Instagram has been gradually rolling out more tools for businesses in the last few years.

In 2016, it began allowing businesses to tag products directly in posts. Users can click on the tag and it opens a window in the app where they can buy it.

The firm expanded upon that feature in June by allowing brands to attach the shopping tool to their Instagram Stories.