Before the end of 2021, Instagram's CEO, Adam Mosseri, confirmed the company is researching non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as a developing technology.

“Nothing to announce yet but we are definitely actively exploring NFTs and how we can make them more accessible to a wider audience,” Mosseri said in a video on Instagram Stories (although the service is not without its fair share of problems, it’s still one of the most popular social media apps).

NFTs – which are used to create virtual collectibles – have emerged as an exciting new technology across blockchain-based marketplaces such as OpenSea and RareBits.

The news follows multiple announcements from Twitter and Pinterest over the past few months, which also announced their intentions to explore how NFTs can be used as a major new product offering.

Instagram’s main competitor – Facebook – already has NFT integrations via its subsidiary blockchain-based messaging platform known as Whatsapp, which has created a blockchain system that enables users to send and receive digital assets such as cryptocurrencies.

However, Instagram – one of the most popular social media apps with over 1 billion monthly active users – has so far not made any announcements related to NFTs. As Mosseri told CoinDesk: “I think it’s an interesting place that we can play…and also a way to hopefully help creators.”

Instagram has been actively exploring blockchain technology on its platform, including the possibility of using smart contracts by posting a job listing on LinkedIn in April for a full-time cryptographic researcher. Its parent company Facebook is already developing products on top of the open source distributed ledger known as Ethereum, especially in areas such as privacy and data security.Instagram launched its own version of Stories back in 2017, which allows users to share images and videos lasting 24 hours with their followers. It’s estimated that over 300 million people use the feature each day compared to the overall 700 million monthly active users for the platform.