Popular social platform Instagram expanded its new video-music remix feature Reels to France and Germany. ‘Reels’ is the TikTok rival and was first launched in Brazil in 2019 as a pilot. Instagram now will enable users to share Reels to their Instagram feed, along with the Stories feature.

Instagram Reels allows users to record short, 15-second video clips that are synced to music or other audio and share those on the platform. It is similar to TikTok, and users can soundtrack their ‘Reels’ with a massive collection of music, or borrow any audio from else’s video to create a remix of their meme or a joke.

Instagram Reels

TikTok's Rival Reels

Reels As Tiktok’s Competitor

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently stated that in India, TikTok had garnered more response and followers than Instagram. Facebook’s experimental app division also introduced a new iOS app named ‘Collab’ for creating and mixing music with friends. The social network giant also owns a stand-alone app called ‘Lasso’. Currently available in the United States, users can use Lasso to record themselves dancing and lip-syncing to music, which is similar to TikTok. However, the app failed drastically. Google-owned YouTube is also working on a TikTok rival named Shorts, which will be introduced by the end of 2020.

Reels As Tiktok’s Competitor

‘TikTok rival Reels’ is a brand new way of creating fun and engaging video content from Instagram Stories. The users can select songs/music from a vast library of music, borrow audio from others or record their original soundtrack. It also has a handy video countdown timer and option for adjusting the video’s speed, similar to TikTok. Instagram Reels can be shared on Instagram Stories, sent directly to specific users, or added to a new Reels tab on a user’s profile. There is also a new addition section in Instagram Explore named ‘Top Reels’, where the best-performing public Reels will get a chance to go viral.

Reels is considered as a direct response to the growing popularity of TikTok, which gained tremendous popularity in the last 12 months. TikTok generated “the most downloads for any app ever in a quarter” in Q1 2020. Also, the TikTok’s core demographic is dramatically changing- while it was mostly used earlier by Gen-Z users, nowadays millennials contribute to the more significant share of TikTok’s user base than ever before. This subsequently makes it an excellent platform for attracting proposition for advertisers.

In such a scenario, it is no surprise that Instagram is fast making moves to replicate the most attractive features of TikTok, and mostly in areas where TikTok hasn’t yet amassed a strong foothold, like Brazil. Reels have a higher chance of success in comparison to any other app, due to its prime positioning in the Instagram app- Instagram already has more than 1 billion active users.

How to Create a Video with Instagram Reels

  • Instagram Reels is a new mode in the Instagram Stories camera section, located either between the default Normal mode and Create mode or on the bottom menu next to “Story”.
  • To access the Reels, open the Instagram Stories camera and find the Reels icon.
  • From this screen, one can select the audio by tapping the music icon.
  • One can choose the speed of the video by pressing the play icon.
  • Select how long the video clips will be by selecting the stopwatch icon. When the timer is set, there’s a countdown before the recording starts.
  • Similar to the Boomerang mode, users can scroll across to apply effects or AR filters to their Instagram Reels video.
  • Users can also choose to use any previously saved filters or can scroll to the end and tap “Browse Effects”.
  • Hold down the record button to capture footage.
  • Similar to the TikTok app, one can start and stop recording multiple times during the 15-second video by pressing and holding the record button.
  • Once the result is out, users can edit the cover photo with a video thumbnail or add a cover from their camera roll.
  • After that, save the recorded file as a draft, send it to friends, share it to stories, or add it to the Instagram profile.

Instagram Reels is currently available only in Brazil, France, and Germany.

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