In a bid to compete with TikTok’s soaring popularity, Instagram is launching a new feature called Reels. The feature will be available on both iOS and Android, however, it will be restricted to Brazil in the initial phase.
Instagram Reels lets you make 15-second video clips and share them as Stories. A new section called “Top Reels” is also added. The Top Reels section will apparently be a good way for Instagrammers to get new followers and the Stories to go viral. Most importantly, users will be able to add audio from other videos or create their very own. Furthermore, Instagram is also offering a vast catalog of music to choose from.
Needless say Instagram will market the Reels feature by promoting it on its other platforms like Facebook. TikTok is a viral Chinese social media app that has fostered a community of 1.5 billion monthly users. Ironically Chinese companies are often accused of copying U.S companies and this time around the opposite is true.
Director of product management Robby Stein said “I think Musically before TikTok, and TikTok deserve a ton of credit for popularizing this format” admits Instagram.”
Interestingly TikTok is very popular in developing countries like India and China. There have been instances when the app has been banned by the government. Instagram Reels Brazil debut seems to make sense, especially since the country has many Instagram users and a Music culture to die for. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, “We’re trying to first see if we can get it to work in countries where TikTok is not already big.”
Meanwhile, TikTok’s parent company ByteDance is in turmoil over the acquisition of musical.ly. The latter is an app similar to TikTok but with more U.S users. As of now, the acquisition is under review by the Committee For Foreign Investment In The United States.[via TechCrunch]