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Instagram Launches Reels As An Alternative To TikTok



Instagram has launched Reels, its answer to TikTok, on Wednesday.

The Facebook-owned company added the feature, which allows users to shoot, edit, and post 15-second video clips set to music or audio, Billboard reports. The videos can be viewed via Instagram’s Explore page.

Director of product Tessa Lyons-Laing said Reels “offers anybody the chance to become a creator and break out on a global stage, reaching the entire Instagram audience.”

According to Lyons-Laing, 45 percent of videos uploaded to Instagram in the last month were under 15-seconds. While users have had the ability to upload a short-form video for some time, Reels offers users the ability to speed up or slow down videos, with countdown timers, the use of AR effects, and a library of backing tracks that Instagram recently licensed from record labels. This means that users will not be flagged for copyright issues.

Instagram started testing Reels in Brazil last November and made some changes to the format before expanding to other test countries ahead of its launch. Reels will make its debut in 50 countries.

The Reels launch comes as TikTok faces uncertainty in the U.S. over security concerns related to user data. Microsoft has been in the process of acquiring the business from Chinese company ByteDance, and Donald Trump is looking to ban the app.

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