Facebook has announced today, that it will be launching Instagram reels in more than 50 countries worldwide – U.S., Mexico, U.K., and Japan to name a few.
Instagram reels, which is basically a TikTok clone from Facebook, is an in-app looping video feature that allows users to create, edit, and share 15 second long videos. Along with the boomerang and the superzoom features Instagram reels will be available in the stories section. There are several editing tools available like timers, countdown clocks, and camera effects. Instagram has created a new section in the explore tab just for reels (however, this option is only available for people with public accounts). Reels can also be shared via DMs or on stories.
“We think that the catalog is quite deep and it has some unique content that you can’t really find, at that depth, in other platforms,” Facebook said about Reels’ music catalog.
Facebook also launched a new app called lasso for making short videos, just like TikTok. However, it did not gain any significant traction among masses, leading to Facebook taking it down to make way for Instagram reels. It is easier to make people switch to something that is updated in an app they are already using than trying to make them switch over to a completely new app.
Facebook said that almost 45% of the videos on Instagram were shorter than 15 seconds. This made it clear that people would prefer a short video making feature than a longer one. Moreover, Instagram already has IGTV for publishing long videos.
This is not the first time that Facebook has mimicked another app’s feature. For instance, Facebook took stories from Snapchat and as stated above, it also tried to create lasso, the absolute TikTok clone.
In addition to this, the U.S. government has accused TikTok of violating user privacy terms and sending user data to the Chinese government. Due to this, TikTok faces a potential ban in the US. Just like in India, if TikTok gets banned in other countries as well then it will leave behind a huge vacuum which, Instagram reels will be ready to fill.