Instagram has long struggled with the one-minute video limit. Previously the limit which was set to 15 seconds was upped by four times to 60 seconds, however, even that was not enough to please the creators who wanted to create long-form content. Now an update is here using which creators over the platform will be able to make video content of up to one hour in length. To make this possible, Instagram is taking the support of a standalone app, IGTV, which will be accessible from the Instagram app. The rollout of this new app which would support videos of up to one hour on the platform was announced in an event by the Instagram CEO, Kevin Systrom. The CEO said, “It’s time for the video to move forward, and evolve.” He further informed, “IGTV is for watching long-form videos from your favourite creators.” The information about the new app was also made public on Instagram’s business blog right before the executive took to the stage.
IGTV won’t be an app exclusive to the verified accounts or big accounts. Instead, everyone on the platform will be able to make use of IGTV to view and make vertical videos. The feature would be placed in the form of a small TV icon on the story section. Speaking about the feature, Systrom said: “We made it a dedicated app so you can tap on it and enjoy the video without all the distraction.”
In the IGTV app, viewers will be able to swipe through a variety of longer-form videos, or simply check the Browse tab of personally recommended videos, popular videos or content from creators they’re following with an option of continuing to watch previously started videos. They will also be getting updates and notifications about newly uploaded content.
Systrom explained that IGTV is not going to be filled with commercials just yet. However, he did not forget to add that there might be ads in the future. He remarked “There are no ads in IGTV today,” he further said that it’s “obviously a very reasonable place [for ads] to end up.”
Systrom highlighted that to make the platform sustainable they will have to monetise IGTV in the correct way. He said that the creators are working hard for the platform, therefore it is only right that they are compensated for the content in the future.
IGTV could not only evolve as a monetising platform but also as a platform which supports viewership. To promote this, Instagram is likely to start a monetising platform for the creators, potentially including ad revenue shares. This step is probably going to attract advertisers, given the extremely large user base of Instagram.
Although it is highly unlikely that Instagram would reach the level of YouTube in terms of breadth of content, it is also possible that it can become the go-to place for a substantial number of users when it comes to watching long-form content on their smartphones.
Arpit spends his day closely following the telecom and tech industry. A music connoisseur and a night owl, he also takes a deep interest in the Indian technology start-up scene and spends rest of his time spilling poetry and stories on paper.