Instagram Gets Into Long-Form Video With IGTV

Jun 21, 2018, 19:21
Instagram Gets Into Long-Form Video With IGTV

Social media network Instagram made a more aggressive push into the "media" side of its business earlier this week, hosting a splashy launch for a new service for long-form video called IGTV. When you follow people on Instagram and they make IGTV content, it'll show up as a channel that you can consume through both Instagram and IGTV apps.

Many a company has tried and failed to compete with YouTube, but Instagram has some things going for it, including a billion users-a new milestone that Systrom announced at the event-and plenty of creators already making a living on the service through monetization strategies such as sponsorships. Facebook is paying for rights to shows now, but the company aims for the content to eventually be popular enough to be supported exclusively by advertising revenue.

Systrom said IGTV is built to be used on a smartphone, and boosts the time for videos from the previous limit of one minute. Last year, Instagram announced that users spend about a half hour per day or more on the platform. The new platform will allow creators to share videos up to one hour in length.

-Twitter says video makers are welcome to apply to be part of the new "Creator Originals", that will debut later in 2018. Anyone can be a creator - you can upload your own IGTV videos in the app or on the web to start your own channel. First, it's built for how you actually use your phone, so videos are full screen and vertical. These tabs contain other recommended videos that are sorted in a number of different ways ('For You", "Following", "Popular', etc.) and you can swap between channels by touching any of the videos that you see on the screen. The app is now available on the App Store for free, so be sure to check it out. The CEO said, "It's time for the video to move forward, and evolve". When you follow a creator on Instagram, their channel will show up for you to watch. Once you're there, you can like the video, comment on it, and share it via DM.

This will be interesting to watch play out as IGTV goes head to head with YouTube and Snapchat's explore feature. Rather, it is clearly aimed at high-quality creators with huge followings-people like Kim Kardashian, who is already using IGTV actively.

Snapchat in 2015 launched Snapchat Discover, a feature that allows publishers including National Geographic, Vice and Cosmopolitan to upload daily multimedia "stories". At a press conference after the announcement, Systrom said Instagram has no plans to produce content itself.

Citing 2017 data from Emarketer, Instagram noted that "these days, people are watching less TV and more digital video".

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