Facebook launches Instagram TV – What we Know so far

Updated on 21 June 2018

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Instagram TVFacebook announced a new feature: Instagram television (IGTV), a long form video app that’s also accessible within the Instagram app.

It will be rolling out over the next few weeks to global users on Android and iPhone devices.

“Just like turning on the TV, IGTV starts playing as soon as you open the app. You don’t have to search to start watching content from people you already follow on Instagram and others you might like based on your interests. You can swipe up to discover more — switch between “For You,” “Following,” “Popular” and “Continue Watching.” You can also like, comment and send videos to friends in Direct,” Kevin Systrom, co-Founder and CEO states in a blog post.

Instagram has said it’s not immediately paying for any content on the app, nor will it start with any advertising.

The platform recently announced that it has reached 1 billion users, tying for the place of second largest social network with YouTube.

The Hootsuite article What Brands Need to Know to Get Started’ cautions against brands rushing to adopt the new platform without a strategy.

“In any case, before jumping into IGTV, it will be important to build a social video strategy for your brand and get equipped with our social video toolkit. Or, if you already have a social video strategy, you’ll need to figure out how IGTV fits into it. With a built-in audience as large as YouTube, IGTV will certainly be hard to ignore.

Here’s what we know so far about the new app, courtesy of Hootsuite. 

  • Videos are full screen and vertical
  • Video length is 15 seconds to 60 minutes
  • Users can watch inside the Instagram app or on the IGTV app
  • Videos play automatically for users upon opening the IGTV app
  • Creators can add “swipe up” call-to-actions on videos
  • Within the IGTV app, users have the option to browse between “For You,” “Following,” “Popular,” and “Continue Watching” tabs
  • Engagement: users can like or comment on videos, or send videos to friends in DirectCreators have their own channels, like YouTube (and anyone can be a creator)
  • Videos can be uploaded to the IGTV app or the web
  • Videos on IGTV can also be uploaded to Facebook Watch

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