Reels is set to launch in the U.S. this August and will soon launch globally.
Instagram is clearly upping its game when it comes to content sharing. Earlier on Thursday, NBC News first reported that the social media app is planning to bring on a new video feature for users. Now, Instagram has confirmed that Reels is heading to the app this year.
Reels first launched in India after the country banned TikTok over security and privacy concerns. The new Instagram app feature is expected to rival TikTok and include similar capabilities and functions. The launch of Reels could be good news for countries such as the United States and Australia who are considering banning TikTok.
A Facebook representative confirmed the launch of Reels on Thursday.
“We’re excited to bring Reels to more countries, including the U.S., in early August. The community in our test countries has shown so much creativity in short-form video, and we’ve heard from creators and people around the world that they’re eager to get started as well,” the spokesperson says.
Reels was designed to challenge TikTok’s growing popularity worldwide. In a new section within the Instagram app, Reels allows users to create and post 15-second videos set to music.
As well, Reels offers a set of editing tools such as a countdown timer and functions to adjust video speeds. This aspect aims to make the feature user friendly and allow creative content to be recorded easily.
[Photo via Instagram]
At this time, no specific date for its launch in the U.S. and other countries has been shared.
The announcement of Reels comes at a rather convenient time. This past week, the Trump Administration has been hinting that a nationwide ban on TikTok could go into effect soon. The government is worried about the amount of data that is collected from TikTok. Officials believe that the app’s company ByteDance is collecting user information and providing it to the Chinese government.
In an interview this week, White House advisor Peter Navarro claimed that TikTok helps China engage in “information warfare” against the United States. He also strongly hinted that a TikTok shutdown may actually happen.