Instagram brings TikTok-like short videos to India with 'Reels'
New Delhi, July 8 2020 - With the ban on TikTok creating a huge vacuum for the 15-second videos in the Indian Internet space, Facebook-owned Instagram on Wednesday announced the extension of the testing of Reels which allows users to record, edit and share short multi-clip videos, to India.
With Reels, Instagram users can share short videos with their followers on Feed and, if they have a public account, make their reels available to the wider Instagram community through a new space in Explore.
"With the rise in video consumption overall and videos making up over a third of posts on Instagram in India, Instagram has a big role to play in unleashing expression in the country," Ajit Mohan, Vice President and Managing Director, Facebook India, told reporters in a video call.
"With Reels, we're unveiling the future of entertainment on the platform, in a way that ignites creativity. With the multiple creative formats, whichever way you want to express yourself, it can now be on Instagram," Mohan added.
Instagram is used by over a billion people globally across many surfaces -- Feed, Stories, IGTV and Live.
With Reels, people can express themselves while entertaining others, whether that's by trying out a fun new dance or spreading the message on something they care about.
People can record and edit 15-second multi-clip videos with audio, effects and new creative tools on Reels.
"Instagram has always been a place where culture is created, because people come to share the things they care about and be entertained.
"We're constantly listening to our community, and have heard that they want to make and watch short-form videos on Instagram and have the opportunity to be discovered by our broader community," said Vishal Shah, Vice President of Product, Facebook.
"We're excited to expand the test of Reels to India and give the next generation of creators born and bred in India a chance to share their native and cultural context -- and be potential global stars."
The feature will start rolling out to users in India from 7.30 pm from Wednesday and at the onset, will be populated with content from a diverse set of public figures and creators, such as Ammy Virk, Gippy Grewal, Komal Pandey, Arjun Kanungo, Jahnavi Dasetty aka Mahathalli, Indrani Biswas aka Wondermunna, Kusha Kapila, Radhika Bangia, RJ Abhinav and Ankush Bhaguna.
India is the fourth country, after Brazil, Germany and France, where this new format is being tested.
This entertainment experience builds on the work done in the past year to enable expression, such as the vast library of music available on the platform; the Spark AR effects on Instagram that enable more creation and expression on the platform; and the ?Born on Instagram' programme, which has led to discovery and growth of creators from all across India.