Instagram, the ever popular app that allows you to share photos and videos with your friends, family and followers isn't limited to just your phone or tablet. Here, we show you how to use Instagram on a Mac.
How to see, like and comment on Instagram photos on a Mac
Instagram is first-and-foremost designed to be used on a mobile device, but you can view, like and comment on photos and videos on the desktop site. Just visit www.instagram.com and login to your account.
You can't, however, upload photos or videos to your account there. You can view your profile, edit your profile, search for people and see posts there but you can't upload anything. That's a big drawback, but there are workarounds. You might also like: How to add iPhone Live Photos to Instagram
Upload photos to Instagram via third-party apps
There are a number of third-party apps available on the Mac App Store that offer a range of abilities, from being able to browse your feed to checking your notifications and – unlike the website – allowing you to post images from your Mac onto Instagram.
Among the most popular is Flume, which presents your Instagram feed in a stylish window with swipe support and hidden menus for a clean and intuitive experience.
At a glance, it appears that the app just shows a stream of pictures with no text, and no options to like or comment. However, clicking a photo will bring up the caption, along with icons that'll allow you to comment on the photo and like it.
The app also shows your recent notifications, top pictures and even offers curated profile recommendations based on what you post.
It also includes the ability to use Instagram Direct, allowing users to share media, profiles, hashtags and more privately.
The most impressive feature of Flume, though, is its photo and video upload support, a feature offered by very few third-party Instagram apps. Just hover your mouse over the bottom left of the app and the menu will appear. You can then click the camera icon and either take a photo or video right there and then, or upload one from your Mac.
There is a catch, though: Flume is free to download but with a limited number of uploads before you'll need to upgrade via an in-app purchase to Flume Pro. You can download Flume for free here.
While Uplet doesn't offer the ability to browse your Instagram feed natively, it does offer features that power-users may be interested in. Uplet is a simple app available on the Mac App Store that allows users to drag and drop photos & videos and bulk upload them to Instagram in a few seconds - but there's more.
You can edit each photo and video like on Instagram, and add individual captions to each photo. It also has the crop option featured in the app, allowing users the ability to upload either the original or square-size photo. While this isn't for casual users, it allows those die-hard Instagram fans to upload multiple posts all at once. Our only complaint? It is yet to support the new Instagram multi-photo post option, although we imagine support will be coming in the near future.
How to use an Emulator to upload photos to Instagram
Another way to upload photos to Instagram from a Mac is an emulator. One of the most consistent and trusted emulators we've come across is Bluestacks, a free Android emulator that can be downloaded here.
Once downloaded, you'll need to setup an emulated Android device. For this you'll need a Google account and a Bluestacks account, and you'll need to link the two within Bluestacks. Once that's done, you can use the Android emultator to navigate to the Play Store (which is Android's equivalent of the App Store) and download Instagram.
You can then sign-in to your Instagram account, and use the app as you would if you were using a mobile device. This means you can upload photos without being forced to use your phone.