Nearly 10 days after India banned TikTok among other Chinese apps, Instagram has officially announced that it will be extending the testing of its short video format Reels to India.
India is the fourth country, after Brazil, Germany and France, where this new format is being tested.
Reels lets users record and edit 15-second multi-clip videos with audio, effects and new creative tools on Reels; share them with their followers on Feed; and, if they have a public account, make their reels available to the wider Instagram community through a new space in Explore.
The feature will start rolling out to users in India from 7:30pm on Wednesday and at the onset, Instagram has said that it will be populated with content from a diverse set of public figures and creators, such as Ammy Virk, Gippy Grewal, Komal Pandey, Arjun Kanungo, Jahnavi Dasetty aka Mahathalli, Indrani Biswas aka Wondermunna, Kusha Kapila, Radhika Bangia, RJ Abhinav and Ankush Bhaguna.
How it works:
To create a Reel, a user has to select âReelsâ at the bottom of the Instagram camera. Youâll see a variety of creative editing tools on the left side of your screen that you can use to create your reel.
The editing tools include audio, where users can search for a song from the Instagram music library for your reel. Instagram has partnered with several labels for the same. Users can also use their own original audio by simply recording a reel with it.
The tools also have AR effects created by both Instagram, and creators all over the world, to record multiple clips with different effects. To record clips hands-free, they can also set a timer.
There is also a tool called Align that lets users line up objects from their previous clip before recording your next, which helps for seamless transitions like outfit changes or adding new friends into your reel.
And similar to TikTok, they can also choose to speed up or slow down part of the video or audio selected.
Instagram said in a statement that with Reels, you can share with your followers and have the potential to be discovered by the huge, diverse Instagram community on Explore. Reels that you post to Feed or Explore will also appear in the Reels tab of your profile. You can also share to Stories or in Direct, though your reel would then disappear after 24 hours, not be shared to Reels in Explore, and not appear on your profile.
If you have a private account, you can share to Feed so your followers can see your reel. You can also share to Stories or in Direct, though your reel would then disappear after 24 hours.
For those wanting to watch Reels, it will be available under the Reels tab in the Explore section.
Instagram claims that sharing to Reels in Explore gives people the opportunity to access a larger audience, especially since more than 50% of accounts on Instagram globally visit Explore every month.
Ajit Mohan, Vice President and Managing Director, Facebook India, said, âWith the rise in video consumption overall and videos making up over a third of posts on Instagram in India, Instagram has a big role to play in unleashing expression in the country. People across the big and small cities of India come to Instagram to express themselves safely, and also to be entertained. With Reels, weâre unveiling the future of entertainment on the platform, in a way that ignites creativity. With the multiple creative formats, whichever way you want to express yourself, it can now be on Instagram.â