It’s a move that will benefit businesses who can now display QR codes for people to scan to quickly get to their Instagram profiles. The feature launched first in Japan last year, where QR codes are more widely used than in the West.
Instagram is reportedly taking away its old proprietary code scanning system Nametags and replacing it with this system of actual QR-standard codes. Others apps like Facebook and Spotify have their own proprietary code scanning system, but Twitter uses actual QR codes.
It’ll be a plus for anyone who wants to quickly scan a code to follow a page rather than having to search for a page handle within the search field, and given the sheer volume of Instagram accounts means that you can be sure you’re following the right account if you’ve scanned a code.
With the pandemic still affecting most of the world QR codes have become a way for people to sign in to public places they visit for contact tracing, or to view things like restaurant menus to avoid having to touch shared materials.