Facebook launches Instagram Reels to rival TikTok

Amid growing uncertainty over TikTok, Instagram has rolled out a direct competitor, Reels.

The new app is launching in more than 50 countries today, including the US, UK, Japan, and Australia, on both iOS and Android.

Similar to TikTok, Reels lets people create short-form videos set to music that can be shared with friends and followers and discovered while browsing the app.

As part of its features, Reels allows people to record videos up to 15 seconds long and add popular music, as well as an array of filters and effects, over top of them, Verge writes.

Also, Instagram has revamped its Explore page to create a specific landing spot for Reels at the top of the screen that people can vertically scroll through — similar to TikTok’s “For You Page.”

Furthermore, both private and public options are available depending on whether users want huge public following or just want to share with friends.

The launch of Reels comes as TikTok faces a potential ban in the United States or a possible partial acquisition by Microsoft.

A big difference between Reels and TikTok is its tie-ins to the overarching Instagram ecosystem, as people can send Reels to their friends directly on Instagram and they can use Instagram-specific AR filters and tools.

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