TikTok truly became the social media sensation of lockdown, when suburban kids and celebs alike, with calendars suddenly cleared, found themselves with nothing but time to perfect their renditions of the Renegade.
But the era of TikTok dominance may be coming to an end. Triller and Byte (both video-sharing apps) toppled it on the App Store's list, and now it seems Mark Zuckerberg smells techie blood in the water and is ready to get a slice of the action via a new IG feature. Yes, Instagram has just launched ‘Reels’, a 15-second video format - and it’s suspiciously similar to TikTok.
What is 'Instagram Reels'?
This new function allows IG users to create and post short, 15-second videos using tools to add audio, visual effects, and other little editing tricks. Sound familiar? These are shared with your followers and are also discoverable via the Explore page if your account is public.
Much like TikTok, Instagram hopes for Reels to become a lo-fi, inclusive space where users can partake in fun challenges and viral trends; a brief respite from all the curated candids and flat white shots with butchered Maya Angelou quotes.
How to make Instagram Reels
All you need is your smartphone camera to get started. The Reels feature can be accessed like Boomerangs or Instagram Lives - through Instagram's camera feature via options at the bottom of your screen. By tapping or holding down the circle at the bottom of the screen, users can start recording their 15-second videos, with options like speed, audio, effects, and AR filters available to them. Users can even use their own original audio, which can then be shared for other users to use in their own Reels.
Where can Instagram Reels be shared?
Alongside your story, your feeds or in direct messages, you can share your Reels on the Explore page for everyone to see. The Reels with the highest engagement will appear here. Your own creations can also be added to the 'Reels' tab on your profile. For the more cautious among us: fret not, private accounts can keep their videos private to their friends.
Photos: Instagram and supplied