There is a new deal with Instagram!  Instagram by Facebook have added a new feature to the already booming social media platform. 

Surprised? We all are. 

No one was expecting this. On the 5th of August, 2020, Instagram rolled out a new feature to be tested first in 50 countries and Nigeria made the cut. The new feature is called Instagram Reel. Reel like R-E-E-L, not R-E-A-L. I like to call it “Real Reel” though. Yeah! It is the latest deal.

This latest addition is similar to “TikTok” and provides the self-service entertainment that tiktok offers. However, no  two products are the same, so we expect a little disparity regardless of all the similarities. 

What is Instagram Reels and how can you create one?

Instagram Reels allows users to record videos for up to 15 seconds and add any music of choice, including series of filters and effects that can be shared with friends and followers. Just like the TikTok’s “For You Page” where you can easily access users’ posts, Instagram has also created a special spot for Reels at the top of the screen that you can vertically scroll through- this can be found on the Explore page.

Reels video format lives inside of Stories, which users can create in the top-left corner of the Home feed. Both private and public options are available. Of course, having a public profile will allow your Reels to be widely discovered. For people who want to share with friends, Reels created under private accounts will only post to a person’s Feed and Stories. 

How do you know which posts on Instagram are Reels?

Reels clips have a clapboard icon in the bottom-left corner. And they can be found both in the home feed or explore page.

Where can I find all of an individual user’s Reels?

A new tab will be added to users’ profiles to showcase all their Reels in one place. The tab will live alongside the traditional grid of recent posts, as well as tabs for viewing IGTV videos or videos a user was tagged in.

What’s the difference between Instagram Reels and TikTok?

There are a few other features that Instagram Reels will not have at launch. People won’t be able to “duet” with each other — a core TikTok feature that lets people interact with, build upon, and remix videos. Instagram also won’t allow people to upload songs directly into the app’s system. Users intending to make a song go viral can add original audio by just recording and that can live on later, other people could use it and remix it, but the actual song can’t be uploaded directly. However Facebook benefits in its long-standing partnerships with music labels and agencies, which may have to be adjusted and re-negotiated to allow Instagram users access to music and audio for Reels videos.

Also, at the moment, it appears that Reels videos are limited to 15 seconds, while TikTok extended the maximum length of its videos to 60 seconds earlier this year.

Why is Instagram Reels such a big deal?

Facebook is notorious for copying other platform’s popular formats and features and bringing them to its own apps — with rousing success. Most notably, Facebook cloned Snap’s Stories feature and brought it to Instagram, where it was wildly more popular than it ever was on Snapchat.

In just a few years of its existence, TikTok has become a staple of internet culture and social interaction for Generation Z. The app has more than 2.3 billion all-time downloads, thanks to its flurry of short-form videos where users participate in viral challenges, lip sync and dance to music, show off comedic skits, and share their hot takes on society at large.

Facebook’s first attempt at competing with TikTok was a failure. The company launched an app called Lasso in November 2018, but it failed to gain traction: Lasso had fewer than 600,000 downloads, according to Sensor Tower. Lasso shut down on July 10, making way for Facebook to throw all its short-video efforts behind Instagram Reels.

What’s your opinion on Instagram Reels?

36 thoughts on “The new deal from Instagram: Real “Reels”

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