Instagram hits 1bn users, takes on YouTube with IGTV

Instagram hits 1bn users, takes on YouTube with IGTV

Instagram hits 1bn users, takes on YouTube with IGTV

The update comes as Instagram, which Facebook bought in 2012 for $1 billion - is looking to compete with fellow video platform YouTube for young users.

Instagram has launched IGTV at an event in San Francisco featuring numerous Instagram creators. First, it's built for how you actually use your phone, so videos are full screen and vertical. Each of IGTV's channels will belong to a "creator", some of whom were present at the event-social media star Lele Pons, for example, gave a preview of her IGTV cooking show-but Instagram emphasized in its announcement that anyone can be a creator.

Instagram revealed the video platform in San Francisco on Wednesday, at an event attended by web celebrities like gamer Tyler Blevins, also known as Ninja, and Lele Pons, who has 25 million followers.

- Simple to use: It starts playing as soon as you open the app, so you don't have to search to get started. There's four different categories for the videos: For You, Following, Popular, and Continue Watching. After signing in to IGTV, it will automatically start playing vertical videos uploaded by people followed by the user alongside customized recommendations somewhere else in Instagram.

Instagram is taking on TV and YouTube with a new property called IGTV, where videos can run up to an hour long.

While Facebook offers no detailed revenue breakdown, the research firm eMarketer estimates Instagram will generate $5.48 billion in net USA ad revenue this year, up 70.4 percent from last year and accounting for more than one-fourth of Facebook's net mobile ad revenue. Dubbed IGTV, it is expected to roll out in coming weeks. Facebook is paying for rights to shows now, but the company aims for the content to eventually be popular enough to be supported exclusively by advertising revenue. It will allow Instagram video creators to upload vertically formatted clips of up to one hour in length. So IGTV features can also be accessed on the standard Instagram mobile app.

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"How we watch is changing quickly but what we watch is changing too", Systrom said, pointing out the growing popularity of contents by the exponentially-growing number of creators.

Much like Youtube, IG will also have a content discovery algorithm that will populate your feed with videos they find relevant to your taste and interests. IGTV has four subheadings that allow you to customize your viewing.

Download and open the IGTV app for iOS or Android.

Instagram has launched a new standalone app for video.

The Facebook -owned photo-sharing app has previously dealt in still images and videos of up to 60 seconds.

Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom says that the company has no immediate plans to pay creators with large followings yet, but hopes in the future that the idea of advertising and paying users will become a reality. Smaller accounts will only be given 10-minute video limits, but Instagram did not specify the exact criteria for what qualifies an account for the longer video option.

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