Today, Instagram Reels, a feature similar to popular video-clip sharing app TikTok, is launching globally. The feature will be available in 50 more countries including the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Spain, and several others. The feature will be available on both iOS and Android devices.
Similar to TikTok, Instagram Reels allows users to create short video clips set to music that can be shared with friends, family, and followers on the app and on other social media platforms. The app’s Explore page has also been redesigned to include a specific place to view Reels so that the public Reels can be searched for and viewed in the explore section of the app.
Instagram Reels Goes Global
Initially, the feature was launched in Brazil in 2019 and Instagram released it in Germany and France last month. Now, the feature is available globally in 50 more countries.
“Reels invites you to create fun videos to share with your friends or anyone on Instagram. Record and edit 15-second multi-clip videos with audio, effects, and new creative tools. You can share reels with your followers on Feed, and, if you have a public account, make them available to the wider Instagram community through a new space in Explore. Reels in Explore offers anyone the chance to become a creator on Instagram and reach new audiences on a global stage.”
On the app, the new Reels feature can be found as a new option next to Story with the Instagram camera and includes the following editing tools:
Audio: Search for a song from the Instagram music library. You can also use your own original audio by simply recording a reel with it. When you share a reel with original audio, your audio will be attributed to you, and if you have a public account, people can create reels with your audio by selecting “Use Audio” from your reel.
AR Effects: Select one of the many effects in our effect gallery, created both by Instagram and creators all over the world, to record multiple clips with different effects.
Timer and Countdown: Set the timer to record any of your clips hands-free. Once you press record, you’ll see a 3-2-1 countdown, before recording begins for the amount of time you selected.
Align: Line up objects from your previous clip before recording your next to help create seamless transitions for moments like outfit changes or adding new friends into your reel.
Speed: Choose to speed up or slow down part of the video or audio you selected. This can help you stay on a beat or make slow motion videos.
Users can choose to share their reels with only their followers if their account is private. Additionally, other users will not be able to use original audio from their reel and will not be able to share their reel publicly. With a public account, users can share their reel to a wider Instagram community in addition to their followers.
TikTok’s Future in the United States
The launch of Reels comes at a time when TikTok’s future in the United States is very uncertain. TikTok is currently facing the worry of a potential ban in the U.S. by President Donald Trump or a partial acquisition by Microsoft.
Recently, TikTok’s parent company ByteDance, accused Facebook of plagiarizing its application with Instagram Reels and Facebook was also accused of giving out monetary incentives to attract TikTok creators to join Reels. However, Instagram’s product director Robbery Stein denied those claims. Stein said: that
“TikTok deserves a ton of credit for popularizing formats in this space, and it’s just great work. At the end of the day, no two products are exactly alike, and ours are not either.”
Reels is currently in the testing phase and may be subjected to change in the future. The feature is not available for all Instagram users at the moment. Some users might have to keep checking the app and refreshing it as it rolls out to more regions gradually.