Instagram has chosen Brazil to test Reels, a new TikTok-like video editing feature. With Reels, which allows you to edit 15-second videos by adding music and effects in the same way as TikTok, Instagram aims to compete with the application published by the Chinese giant ByteDance which has already exceeded one billion downloads this year.
The Reels function can be used in a private conversation as in Story. Users will be able to import music from another video or have access to Facebook’s collection of songs. To further popularize its new feature, Instagram highlights the best videos in the “Top Reels” section, accessible from its “Explore” tab, provided they are public.
If the social network has chosen to launch Reels only in Brazil for the moment, where it is called Cenas, it is in part because the country has a huge number of Instagram users and is renowned for its strong musical culture. It is also a lower priority market for TikTok and on which Instagram will be able to develop serenely.
Instagram had already copied the Snapchat social network before developing the Stories function in markets where Snapchat was not dominant and tends to reproduce the same strategy against TikTok. Unlike Lasso, the independent Facebook app that failed to compete with TikTok, Reels is in a better position to democratize. Indeed, Reels is likely to reach the billion monthly active users that Instagram accounts, since it is an integral part of the application.
TikTok has something to worry about Facebook since according to a recent Morning Consult study on the use of social networks by Generation Z (i.e. 13-16), TikTok is used more than Facebook, but less than Instagram and Snapchat, which remain the dominant applications in 13-21 year olds. However, Facebook is still largely in the lead among users over 22.