Instagram goes after YouTube with the launch of IGTV, a standalone app for “long-form” videos
Instagram also announced that it now has 1 Billion users
Two weeks ago, we came across a report which stated that Facebook-owned Instagram might soon allow users to post hour-long videos in vertical format. Well, that report has turned out to be true, as Instagram at an event yesterday announced IGTV – a standalone app for “long-form” videos that can be up to one hour long.
Yes, that’s right. Instagram just launched a standalone app that allows sharing videos that are up to one hour long. For those unaware, until now, Instagram allowed sharing of videos that were up to one minute long. Hence, with the launch of IGTV, you will soon start seeing videos that are up to an hour long.
But wait, that’s not it. The videos uploaded on IGTV will be vertical, because Instagram says that the app is “built for how you actually use your phone” – which is holding it in vertical orientation. That said, IGTV will have channels which is similar to the channels we have on YouTube. You can either follow a creator’s channel or create your own channel to post videos that are up to an hour long.
Using IGTV is also very simple, because once you open the app, it will start playing videos posted by the channels you are following. Moreover, the app also has different tabs like ‘For You’, ‘Following’, ‘Popular’ and ‘Continue Watching’. All of which we think are self-explanatory. That said, just like Instagram, you can drop likes, comments and send videos to friends in Direct from inside IGTV.
From our CEO Kevin Systrom (instagram.com/kevin)“Today, we have two big announcements to share. First, Instagram is now a global community of one billion! Since our launch in 2010, we’ve watched with amazement as the community has flourished and grown. This is a major accomplishment — so from all of us at Instagram, thank you!Second, we’re announcing our most exciting feature to date: IGTV, a new app for watching long-form, vertical video from your favorite Instagram creators, like LaurDIY (instagram.com/laurdiy) posting her newest project to King Bach (instagram.com/kingbach) sharing his latest comedy skit. sharing his latest comedy skit. While there’s a stand-alone IGTV app, you’ll also be able to watch from within the Instagram app so the entire community of one billion can use it from the very start.IGTV is different in a few ways. First, it’s built for how you actually use your phone, so videos are full screen and vertical. Also, unlike on Instagram, videos aren’t limited to one minute. Instead, each video can be up to an hour long.We strived to make it simple, too. Just like turning on the TV, IGTV starts playing as soon as you open the app. You don’t have to search to start watching content from people you already follow on Instagram and others you might like based on your interests. You can swipe up to discover more — switch between “For You,” “Following,” “Popular” and “Continue Watching.” You can also like, comment and send videos to friends in Direct.Also like TV, IGTV has channels. But, in IGTV, the creators are the channels. When you follow a creator on Instagram, their IGTV channel will show up for you to watch. Anyone can be a creator — you can upload your own IGTV videos in the app or on the web to start your own channel.Instagram has always been a place to connect with the people who inspire, educate and entertain you every day. With your help, IGTV begins a new chapter of video on Instagram. We hope it brings you closer to the people and things you love.”IGTV will be rolling out globally over the next few weeks on iOS and Android.
Posted by Instagram on Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Having said that, even though IGTV is a standalone app, if you are already on Instagram, you will be to watch videos posted on IGTV from within the Instagram app. The IGTV icon will appear above the Stories bar right next to the Direct shortcut (that paper plane icon).
It’s clear that with IGTV, Instagram is going after YouTube. But, the question is, will it really be able to compete with a mammoth that YouTube is? That’s something only time can tell. But we personally don’t think YouTube has anything to worry about right now, unless and until more number of popular creators and celebs join IGTV and start sharing videos on a regular basis.
IGTV is available both on Android and iOS. You can head over to the links given below to give it a try. Oh, and yes, apart from announcing IGTV, Instagram also announced that it now has 1 Billion users.