“It’s time for video to move forward and evolve.” Kevin Systrom
Instagram has reached a billion users and is squaring off with YouTube. With the launch of IGTV, is the goal to offer an alternative for YouTubers or compete with Netflix? Probably both. During the presentation event on the 20th of June in San Francisco, founder and managing director Kevin Systrom presented IGTV through the launch of a few emblematic stats:
- Instagram is currently used by a billion people a month
- Within the app, the use of videos has grown 60% on an annual basis
- Teenagers watch 40% less tv than 5 years ago.
These points are enough to understand the motives that led the social media leader to invest in video, especially considering that the youngest target market is searching for alternative communication tools. After dethroning Snapchat with short videos, Instagram is now going after YouTube. We’re just at the start of a content evolution–an innovative user model. It’s definitely an ambitious move to offer vertical videos, an unusual format that we aren’t used to.
Instagram launches IGTV: hour-long videos
The words of co founder Kevin Systrom in an article on Blog say a lot: “We’ve made it simple, too. 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.”
As for video length, for all users it will be from 15 seconds to 10 minutes, while celebrities or accounts with at least 10 thousand followers can make hour-long videos. In fact, some are already getting down to work with it, like Kim Kardashian and Chiara Ferragni.
How IGTV works: simple and instant
“The way we are watching video is changing. Anyone can be a creator – you can upload your own IGTV videos in the app or on the web to start your own channel”.
IGTV’s features respond to these new needs:
- Mobile-first: IGTV begins from how we naturally hold and use our smartphones. Videos are full screen and vertical.
- Simple to use: as soon as you open the app it starts, there’s no need to search.
- Content: IGTV lets you follow the videos of your followers, so you can discover new ones.
- Who’s already using it? Here are some of the big names in Italy and the world: Chiara Ferragni showing her house, Kim Kardashian showing her followers her pop up shop, and others.
It’s really simple to use–just update the Instagram app and you’ll find the button in the top right. Or you can download it straight from the app store. If you tap the icon, you’ll instantly see videos ordered by Instagram’s recommendation in the section For you; Following shows videos made by your contacts; Popular has the most popular content at the moment; and Continue watching is similar to Netflix in that it lets to pick up a video where you left off. Starting from the basic premise that the way of watching videos has changed, and considering the increasingly strong need to create content, they’ve made it so that video becomes an irreplaceable form of expression.