Instagram has finally launched its first weapon in the war against TikTok– Reels. TechCrunch and Variety reported The editing feature residing in the Stories section launched today in Brazil.
The feature lets anyone shoot 15-second videos that can be edited with music from other videos – just like TikTok. The company wants to popularize the format by promoting it through hashtags.
“I think [about] Musically before TikTok, and TikTok deserves a ton of credit for popularizing this format,” Robby Stein, Instagram‘s director of product management told TechCrunch. This is quite similar to what CEO Kevin Systrom said about Snapchat when the company launched the Stories feature in 2016.
However, this is a different ball game. TikTok is popular in various countries such as India, US, Turkey, and Russia. It also has a bigger userbase than Snapchat, and it’s growing at rapid pace.
It’s important to note TikTok allows people to download videos and share them freely. A lot of its popularity is due to people watching videos created on TikTok on other platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, and even Instagram.
The Bytedance-owned app found its popularity and millions of users in India. So it makes sense that Instagram is launching this feature in Brazil, a comparable market to India with a huge userbase and appetite for entertainment.
So Instagram has to compete with TikTok videos on its own platform as well. The feature is available both on iOS and Android in Brazil. We’ll have to wait and see if this feature takes off in the country and if Instagram proceeds to launch it in other places.