Instagram has just announced the launch of IGTV, its latest feature for long-format vertical videos. The company launched this new feature at an event in San Francisco while featuring a number of Instagram creators. The company added a new post on its blog to inform us about the new feature. This seems to be Facebook‘s attempt to take on YouTube but with some twist. The first thing to note here is that IGTV will be a separate app in addition to the ability to watch IGTV videos from the official Instagram app. Instagram pointed out that IGTV is different from the Instagram app in a number of ways with the first change being how it is built.
IGTV is built to be used just as how a smartphone user would use their smartphone which means that the videos here are full screen and vertical. The second difference is the videos here are not limited to the usual one minute and instead, they can be up to an hour long in length. According to the post, similar to how a TV would work, the IGTV app starts playing videos as soon as the user opens the app. This means that there is no need to search just to start watching a video and the app will start playing videos from the Instagram accounts that you already follow.
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The app provides four lists at the bottom of the screen that includes “For You”, “Following”, “Popular”, and “Continue Watching”. The app comes with the usual interaction options including liking a video, commenting on the video and sharing the video to your friends and family withing Instagram Direct. Similar to TV and YouTube, IGTV also has channels where users can post long from videos.
However, in IGTV, the creators are the channels which mean that whatever they post will be available for you to watch on IGTV. Instagram clarified that anyone can be a creator and create a channel on IGTV.
As previously reported, there are no advertisements on IGTV at the time of writing. The IGTV app will be rolling out across the globe in coming weeks for Android and iOS.