Secondly, to interact with Instagram and post on your account, some of these apps and services like Gramblr require your login details. While I’ve not run into any adverse consequences in using it, I’d still recommend being cautious about handing over login details to third-party services. Some users have reported that after they’ve installed Gramblr their Instagram account seemed to be auto-liking other posts without your control. Others have reported that they seem to have incurred penalties from Instagram. I haven’t been able to confirm either behavior, but it’s definitely a reason for extra caution. So use it at your own risk.
In light of these issues, I can’t recommend using Gramblr. But I’m leaving this information up nevertheless in case it’s useful to someone.
Although Instagram is geared strongly toward using with mobile devices, there might be times you want to post to Instagram from a desktop or laptop instead. So I’ve been putting together a series of guides to some of the best apps for posting to Instagram from a computer.
I’m focusing in this one on Gramblr. It works with Mac and Windows and is free.
Using Gramblr to Post to Instagram
There are two parts to it, an app that you install on your computer and a web service. They work together in getting your photos from your desktop to posting on Instagram.
The desktop app part of it is a utility app that really just runs in the background. Once you’ve installed it, you open it to launch the main Gramblr screen and then it just quietly takes care of things behind the scenes. All your main interactions are with the web service.
If you're looking to create banners, thumbnails, or other graphics for your social media accounts, a good option worth looking at is Canva. It runs in a web browser, which means nothing to install on a computer, and you can even use a mobile device. So you can do it from anywhere, and it's very straightforward to use. There's a very capable free plan, and you can get many more useful features, photos, and fonts with the Pro plan. The Pro plan has a 30-day free trial, which you can get here.
Gramblr will also require your Instagram username and password in order to interact with your account, which is less than ideal in terms of security but is unfortunately pretty standard for these third-party apps for posting to Instagram.
For the web service you need to create an account. Once you’ve logged in you get a screen that looks like this:
The main functions are all pretty straightforward. You drag and drop photos or videos onto the panel, and choose your cropping. You can only upload one image at a time.
There’s also a full suite of image editing tools like exposure controls and sharpening. There are also features like filters, frames, stickers, adding text overlays, and redeye correction.
With Gramblr you can also schedule the post for some point in the future. Just choose the date and time and hit Send.
The image/s or video/s will then be added to the upload schedule queue, where you can see a list of all your upcoming posts.
There is, however, an important catch with the scheduling: your desktop computer has to be running for the scheduled posts to actually post. Here’s how Gramblr puts it:
You must keep your computer ON for uploads to take place. If it is asleep, it will wake up for the upload. If it is shut down or hibernating, it will not wake up. If your computer cannot contact our servers within 30 minutes, the upload will expire and it will never occur. Check your power settings to make sure you are on High Performance. All uploads will occur +/- 10 minutes from the specified time.
If you’re so inclined, you can also set things like buying likes, auto liking posts, or earning “coins.” Frankly, none of those are of interest to me, but they’re there if you want them. Here’s how the folks at Gramblr explain the coins feature:
We wanted to create something for our users to do together, and we thought creating a little “game of likes” would be quite fun. It’s a nice way to see and like other people’s pictures, and being able to expect the same in return if you want to! We think it could become an easier way for some people to get noticed and get followers too.
Since I originally posted this, I’ve had a number of questions from readers. I’m not associated with Gramblr at all–other than being an occasional user of their service–but here are some common issues that have been raised:
- With Gramblr you can only upload one image at a time. You can, however, have multiple images sitting your scheduling queue.
- In what is presumably a bug, Gramblr doesn’t work with portrait (vertical) rectangular images. Hopefully this will be something that the developers will resolve, but for now, it doesn’t work.
- It does support multiple Instagram accounts. You access the Switch Account function by clicking on your username in the top right when you’re logged into Gramblr.
Where to Get Gramblr
You can download the installation app from their website.
Other Options for Posting to Instagram from a Desktop or Laptop Computer
If Uplet doesn’t meet your needs, I’ve put together a list of other ways to post to Instagram from a desktop or laptop computer. Each has its own pros and cons. Some have features likes scheduling, and some work as browser plugins.