When your social media platform has been the subject of investigations, congressional hearings, front page stories, and forced to pay fines for privacy lapses, well, sometimes a slight rebrand is in order. That’s what Facebook is doing with two of its biggest social assets, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Facebook has been under fire for quite some time, and in a move apparently designed to provide more clarity to app users, the company will be rebranding both Instagram and WhatsApp as “Instagram by Facebook” and “WhatsApp by Facebook”. Each app will look the same on your phone screen, but its new name will be reflected in the Google Play and App Store.
It’s a very minor change, but any time you tinker with naming and branding it’s a pretty big deal—especially when you’re discussing one of the titans in the social space. Privacy and data rights have been driven to the fore in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and so far, Facebook has attempted to be transparent with their changes to address concerns.
That is seemingly one of the drivers behind this rebrand, which will officially consolidate the three platforms under the Facebook umbrella. One of the interface changes that will accompany the move will be cross-platform communication—the ability to send a message to a buddy on Facebook from your WhatsApp or Instagram app, instead of having to utilize each platform’s individual messaging tools.
A minor performance tweak, but one that will promote seamless communication across Facebook’s apps.
Things never stay the same for long in Internetland, and Facebook’s rebrand of its two biggest social platforms is yet another example. We’ll see when the change is ultimately made and reflected in the App Store.