Facebook-owned Instagram has officially rolled out Instagram Reels in 50 countries including the United States. Instagram has been testing Reels since last year in Brazil, Germany, and a few other countries. Earlier this year when India banned TikTok on national security concerns, Instagram quickly rolled out Reels in the country. Now that it’s widely available, let’s take a look at TikTok vs Instagram Reels comparison to find out how it differs from the Chinese app.
Facebook sensed an opportunity in TikTok’s turmoil
TikTok is facing the heat in several countries around the world. India has banned it due to concerns that it is sharing user data with the Chinese government. The US, Australia, and other nations have expressed similar concerns. President Donald Trump has given Microsoft until September 15 to work out a deal to buy the US operations of TikTok from ByteDance. Microsoft has expressed interest in TikTok.
Facebook has mastered the art of stealing others’ features. Adding the Reels tab to the wildly popular Instagram app will bring the feature to hundreds of millions of users worldwide. TikTok is not the first – and will not be the last – app that Facebook has stolen features from.
TikTok vs Instagram Reels: The major differences
Just like TikTok, Reels has a bunch of creative tools to create short-form videos with special effects, text, and music. It also allows users to discover and share Reels. There are still several differences between TikTok and Instagram Reels. Here are some of them:
- TikTok allows users to shoot videos of up to 60 seconds. Reels has restricted videos at just 15 seconds, at least for now.
- Reels is deeply integrated into Instagram’s ecosystem, alongside IGTV and stories. It gives creators a wide variety of options. You can send Reels to your friends on Instagram. You can also use Instagram-specific tools and AR filters.
- Instagram is not paying popular creators for their videos, though creators can work with brands to do promotional videos. TikTok has set up a $200 million fund in the US to pay popular creators for their videos.
- Unlike TikTok, Instagram Reels won’t allow users to “duet” with each other, for now. The “duet” functionality allows people to interact with one another and remix videos.
- Reels users cannot upload songs into the app’s system. They have to add original audio by recording.
We expect Instagram to roll out software updates to add more functionality in the future.