Instagram officially launches Reels feature to take on TikTok

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Instagram officially launches Reels feature to take on TikTok

Facebook faced similar charges at a congressional hearing on US tech companies' alleged abuse of market power last week, with lawmakers suggesting the company has copied rivals like Snapchat for anti-competitive reasons.

On Wednesday, Facebook-owned Instagram launched Reels, a product that is almost a carbon copy of TikTok, in the U.S. and more than 50 other countries, including India, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Germany. "That history of success is one of the strongest reasons for Instagram's team to think it can pull Reels off. TikTok did it first, but maybe Instagram can do it better".

Using Reels, Instagram users can create 15-second multi-video clips using a selection of filters, audio, visual effects, and new creative tools now available to explore on the app. Facebook also tried out a standalone app called Lasso which did not gain much traction.

Reels' debut comes days after Microsoft said it was in talks to acquire TikTok's US operations from China's ByteDance.

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Instagram's product team wanted to positioning Instagram camera around a few core formats.

Reels-which, like Stories, is housed within the already massive Instagram app-could prove another example of that.

Audio: Search for a song from the Instagram music library.

Using audio, effects and a whole array of creative tools users can record and edit 15-second video clips.

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The feature, which was first trialed by the social media platform in Brazil late past year, has already been made available in India, France and Germany.

What creators like about TikTok is that they can amass huge audiences quickly if their video gains traction. "Reels gives people new ways to express themselves, discover more of what they love on Instagram, and help anyone with the ambition of becoming a creator take center stage", the platform said.

Reels won't just live on your profile, though.

Reels isn't its own world like TikTok is or Vine was. Instagram is coming somewhat late to the game. And one of Instagram's biggest rivals, Snapchat, is also reportedly testing TikTok-style design for exploring content.

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