Build an Instagram Feed in Swift

Build an Instagram Feed in Swift

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Building an Instagram Feed
  3. Setting up the Project
  4. Creating the Custom Table View Cell
  5. Configuring the Cell
  6. Registering the Cell with the Table View
  7. Implementing the TableViewDataSource and TableViewDelegate
  8. Adding Model Objects
  9. Designing the Cell Interface
  10. Finalizing the Feed Interface
  11. Running the App and Testing

Building an Instagram Feed

In this tutorial, we will explore how to build an Instagram feed using Swift and Xcode. The Instagram feed we aim to recreate includes a table view that displays user posts with images, captions, and various action buttons. We will create a custom table view cell to handle the display of each post and configure it to show the necessary content and user interface elements. By the end of this tutorial, you will have a basic understanding of how to build a similar feed for your iOS app.

1. Introduction

Instagram is a popular social media platform that allows users to share photos and videos with their followers. The feed is a central feature of the app, displaying posts from accounts users follow in a visually appealing and interactive manner. It is essential for developers to understand how to replicate this feed functionality to create engaging and intuitive user experiences in their own apps.

2. Setting up the Project

To start building the Instagram feed, we first need to set up a new project in Xcode. We'll choose the "Single View Application" template and name it "Project Instagram Feed." Once the project is created, we'll focus on creating the necessary components to display the feed.

3. Creating the Custom Table View Cell

To display each post in the feed, we need to create a custom table view cell. This custom cell will contain user interface elements such as an image view for the user's profile picture, a label for the username, and a main image view to display the post content. We'll also include action buttons for liking, commenting, and sharing the post.

4. Configuring the Cell

After creating the custom table view cell, we need to configure it to display the content of each post. We'll create a function called configure(with model: InstagramPost) which will receive a model object containing the necessary data for each post. Inside this function, we'll set the appropriate values for the user's username, profile picture, post image, and number of likes.

5. Registering the Cell with the Table View

To use our custom table view cell, we need to register it with the table view. We'll create a static function registerNib() inside the cell class that returns a UINib object. This function helps simplify the process of registering the cell with the table view by using the same name as the cell class. We'll also create a static property identifier to use as the reusable cell identifier in the table view.

6. Implementing the TableViewDataSource and TableViewDelegate

We need to implement the UITableViewDataSource and UITableViewDelegate protocols in our view controller to populate the table view with data and handle user interactions. We'll provide the necessary implementations for the required functions such as numberOfSections, numberOfRowsInSection, cellForRowAt, and didSelectRowAt. These functions will fetch the data for the posts and configure the cell accordingly.

7. Adding Model Objects

We'll create a struct called InstagramPost to represent each post in the feed. This struct will have properties such as the number of likes, username, profile picture, and post image name. We'll create an array of InstagramPost objects in the view controller and populate it with sample data to display in the feed.

8. Designing the Cell Interface

In the custom table view cell's .xib file, we'll set up the layout and design of the cell interface. We'll add container views to organize the different elements such as the user's profile picture, username, action buttons, and post image. By applying constraints to these views and setting the appropriate background colors and image views, we can achieve a visually appealing design for the cell.

9. Finalizing the Feed Interface

To complete the feed interface, we'll add a navigation bar with the Instagram logo and title to simulate the top header. We'll also apply constraints to the table view to fill the entire screen, ensuring the feed fits neatly within the view. By embedding the view controller in a navigation controller, we can achieve the desired navigation bar layout.

10. Running the App and Testing

Finally, we can run the app in the simulator to see the Instagram feed in action. We'll make sure all the elements are properly displayed, the data is loaded correctly, and the user can interact with the action buttons and cell selection. With further refinement and enhancements, the Instagram feed can be integrated into a fully functional social media app.


  • Learn how to build an Instagram feed in Swift using Xcode.
  • Create a custom table view cell to display user posts.
  • Configure the cell with data from model objects.
  • Register the cell with the table view for reuse.
  • Implement the necessary table view data source and delegate methods.
  • Design and layout the cell interface in the XIB file.
  • Run the app and test the Instagram feed functionality.


Q: Can I customize the design of the Instagram feed? A: Yes, you can modify the design and layout of the feed according to your app's requirements.

Q: Can I fetch data from a server instead of using static sample data? A: Absolutely! You can retrieve data from a server using APIs and populate the feed dynamically.

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