With more than one billion people now using Instagram, the social network is launching a new app aimed at taking on YouTube. Known as IGTV, the new app will feature long-form video from some of the platform’s most popular creators, including LaurDIY and King Bach, the latter of whom will launch a new comedy skit on the platform.
The purpose of launching a standalone app for IGTV is obvious: Instagram wants users to focus their attention entirely on the long-form video being presented. However, Instagram users will still be able to watch content in the main app. A new TV icon will appear in the upper right corner next to the messaging icon.
What makes IGTV different is that the videos will be entirely vertical, and the videos can be up to an hour long. That beats the hell out of Instagram’s current limit of 15 seconds.
Instagram explains further:
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. 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.
Once you follow someone on Instagram, their “channel” will appear in IGTV. All the people you currently follow on Instagram will appear on the new platform, and anyone can make videos, just like on YouTube.
Since launching Instagram Stories, the feature has become incredibly popular on the social network, quickly eclipsing Snapchat’s daily active users shortly after going live. Now, with over one billion users on its platform, there’s no telling how popular IGTV will get once it launches.
IGTV will be available worldwide for Android and iOS in the next few weeks.