A while ago the Indian government took the unusual step of banning 59 Chinese apps. The move came amid rising tensions between the two nuclear powers and clashes that saw major loss of lives on both sides.
Of the banned apps, TikTok is easily the most popular, with reports suggesting that at its peak it had around a couple of hundred million monthly active users in India. To take advantage of opportunities arising from the surprise ban, Instagram today launched Instagram Reels in the country.
Reels was first seen and trialed by users in Brazil, before making its way to a couple of other countries. India marks the fourth country to enjoy Instagram Reels, which incidentally was created from the ground up to go toe-to-toe with video apps like TikTok.
Incidentally, TikTok is facing what can be politely described as a crisis, with some countries deeming the app a security risk or propaganda tool and looking for ways to curtail its reach.
Reeling Them In
There were previous indications that Instagram was testing its Reels app in India. Today’s launch serves as a confirmation and will enable the social media giant to capture a large segment of the video-sharing market in the absence of its main competitor- TikTok.
There are loads of features on Reels that users could find themselves going gaga over! Reels makes it super-easy for anyone to make, edit, and share videos of a maximum runtime of 15 seconds. These videos can have as many effects as users can slip into them, which should make them worth watching for those who have a lot of time on their hands and all the free data in the world!
Videos made by and with Instagram Reels can be shared by users to their followers via their Feed. The Reels feature is smack dab in the Explore page portion of the app and easily accessible too.
Instagram Reels will be active in India as from 7:30 pm IST. It will feature an impressive music collection, courtesy of Instagram’s partnership with a veritable host of music labels. Other noteworthy features on Reels include Spark AR and Born on Instagram, with the two enabling greater artistic expression and discoveries beyond what was previously possible.
Using Reels On Instagram
If you are new to Reels, here’s a short guide to using it:
Step 1: Go to Instagram Camera. Scroll down till you find Instagram Reels and click on this.
Step 2: Click on a small list of choices- Countdown, Align, Audio, AR Effects, Timer, and Speed.
Step 3: Shoot your video.
Step 4: Post your video and hope for it to go viral at the speed of lightning!
It is possible to share videos on your Reels to every follower of yours. These videos can also be attached to your Stories. In case your Instagram account is set to Public, your Reels content will wind up on a dedicated corner of Explore. Should your account be set to Private, Reels videos can be shared via either your feed or Stories.