Instagram extends Reels up to 60 seconds. So now you can enjoy your life for 60 seconds.
Watch out, TikTok. Instagram Reels is hot on your heels.
Starting Tuesday, Instagram Reels can be up to a minute long. Previously, the videos were limited to 30 seconds. The photo and video sharing platform unveiled the change on its Twitter account.
Instagram reels will continue for 60 seconds.
Today, Instagram announced that Reels can now be up to 60 seconds long. The limit, previously 15 seconds and then upgraded to 30 seconds, was changed at the suggestion of the Instagram community. In addition, earlier this month, TikTok extended its videos to up to three minutes. Instagram’s news is also good for TikTok users who want to post longer TikTok videos on their Instagram accounts with Reels.
Facebook-owned Instagram didn’t immediately respond to a request for further comment about the announcement.
Instagram said the move was aimed at encouraging broader creativity and widening room for expression through its platform. In addition, the platform is introducing a captions sticker within Reels, which converts audio into text-based captions so we can enjoy Reels without audio. Currently, the new feature is launching in several English-speaking countries with hopes to expand to additional countries and languages soon.
Instagram recently announced plans to expand its video capabilities beyond IGTV, Reels, and Stories to engage the entire scope of entertainment and video, specifically full-screen videos. In addition, the platform’s head, Adam Mosseri, no longer wants Instagram to be thought of as just a photo-sharing app and has hinted towards a huge shift in capability for the app shortly.
Currently, YouTube Shorts and Snapchat’s Spotlight also support videos of up to 60 seconds. In May, YouTube Shorts launched a $100 million creator fund to distribute among top Shorts creators over the course of 2021 and 2022; Snapchat distributed $1 million per day to viral Spotlight creators between its launch at the end of November through the end of 2020. Facebook and Instagram have also committed to investing in digital creators.
To access this feature, navigate to create a new Reel, then press the down button on the left side of the screen to reveal the menu. Next, tap “length” to toggle among options to create a 15-second, 30-second, or 60-second Reel. Not all creators have access to 60-second Reels just yet, but it should soon roll out to all users.
The Bottom Line
It is exciting, though, because it already enables longer video uploads in its other elements in the case of Instagram. For example, regular feed videos can be up to 60 seconds, while you can also upload longer videos in 15-second snippets to Stories and hour-long clips to IGTV (when uploading from the web).
Given this, the extension of Reels clips starts to bleed into IG’s other functions, which maybe makes it a less definitive option within the broader Instagram experience.
Or maybe not. Really, it’ll just give more users the capacity to create longer clips or re-purpose the same posts that they’re already uploading to TikTok and YouTube Shorts anyway. By moving in line with these other, similar options, Instagram’s probably welcoming more cross-posting, giving it more content for Reels and likely making for a more repetitive experience across apps.
(Note: If you are thinking of cross-posting your short video clips, ensure there are no watermarks, as Instagram will penalize your reach.)
But it does feel like all these options are becoming a bit same-y. So why have separate video upload processes for each option? Why not just let users upload their video clips, and edit them how they like, then put them all together?
That would give Instagram more content to display within Reels, which could help make it a more engaging option, while also helping to drive more views within the various elements of the app, rather than keeping different video types in separate buckets.
Maybe that’s how Instagram is actually headed – it is currently experimenting with a new, TikTok-like display format for Explore, which does mash all of the content into a single format.
That could help boost discoverability in the app and provide more video inventory for Instagram’s algorithms while also further streamlining the user experience, rather than siloing each element.
Till the next stage, you now have longer Reels to consider.