Instagram is now adding IGTV previews to users’ newsfeeds, the company stated Thursday. Like general videos, IGTV previews will auto-play, but the user must tap it to activate the audio.
The one-minute previews are rolling out this week. Instagram first launched IGTV in June 2018 as a separate app for videos. Since then, the company has been looking for ideas to combine it into the main app, first by placing IGTV videos in the Explore tab, then by setting out specific notification banners for new videos, and finally by giving us the ability to add IGTV previews to our own stories.
IGTV Previews On Your Feed
This, though, is its most aggressive endeavor yet to trade IGTV content to Instagram users who haven’t hopped into the bandwagon.
“Now, you can preview IGTV videos in your feed. When there’s a new video from someone you follow, you can tap from your feed to watch the full video in IGTV,” Instagram wrote on Twitter.
Instagram launched IGTV as a way for people to share longer videos on the platform. It’s part of Instagram’s policy to allow authors more freedom, which in turn could encourage them to share more content. It’s also an attempt to take on Twitch and YouTube, two of the most popular platforms for creators and long videos. Content can range from 10 minutes to one hour for larger accounts. However, the platform still seems somewhat lacking in terms of overall functionality and interface, especially compared with what YouTube and Twitch have to offer. Not to mention that most creators recognize its insistence on vertical videos as a hindrance.
Creators enjoy individual freedom on Twitch and YouTube, most of which, while today on IGTV, aren’t as elegant or smooth. Still, it’s clear that Instagram wants a stake of the creators market, more particularly the number of people they attract with their content. The challenge is to design a platform that will make them want to stay for good or maybe even leave Twitch or YouTube behind.
Since its appearance, IGTV has received criticism on some aspects. In September 2018, it was reported that the platform had been routinely prescribing inappropriate content to users. This isn’t restricted to IGTV, however. YouTube has also received sharp criticism over similar cases of its algorithm showing less-than-decent content to kids, not to mention regular and seemingly arbitrary recommendations of original and collusion theory videos.