Facebook Is Making Changes to Instagram to Crush TikTok
Facebook is reportedly altering its popular photo-sharing service Instagram to more closely resemble the megapopular Chinese app TikTok.
CNBC reports that Facebook’s head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, recently stated that the service plans to start showing users full-screen, recommended videos in their feeds similar to TikTok. In a video posted this week, Mosseri stated: “We’re also going to be experimenting with how do we embrace video more broadly — full screen, immersive, entertaining, mobile-first video. You’ll see us do a number of things, or experiment with a number of things in this space over the coming months.”
Mosseri stated that Instagram has plans to show users full-screen videos in their feeds. This includes videos that it recommends to users including those from accounts they do not follow. Users will start to see Instagram’s newsfeed changes in the coming months.
“We’re no longer a photo-sharing app or a square photo-sharing app,” Mosseri said. This is a major shift for Instagram which up until recently has primarily been an app for users to view square-sized images from friends and accounts that they follow. The change in content presentation will put Instagram in direct competition with the Chinese-owned app TikTok.
Mosseri specifically highlighted TikTok and YouTube in his video, noting that they were serious competitors and outlining the reasons for the changes to Instagram. “Let’s be honest, there’s some really serious competition right now,” he said. “TikTok is huge, YouTube is even bigger, and there’s lots of other upstarts as well.”
Instagram has made competing with TikTok a priority by launching Instagram Reels in August 2020, which a short-form video feature that allows Instagram users to create content with overlaid audio and augmented reality effects, much like they can do on TikTok.
“People are looking to Instagram to be entertained, there’s stiff competition and there’s more to do,” Mosseri said. “We have to embrace that, and that means change.”
Read more at CNBC here.