Instagram Unveils IGTV To Rival Youtube – Users Can Now Create Hour-Long Videos

In an attempt to take on YouTube’s vibrant video creator community, Instagram has launched IGTV, a separate mobile app where users can watch vertical videos that are up to an hour long.

The Facebook-owned image sharing company on Wednesday officially launched the new long-form video portal called IGTV, marking one of the biggest shifts in the app’s history.

The new app will feature as part of the traditional Instagram offering, along-side the usual posts and stories. But it will also be its own app – and will carry the hopes of the Facebook-owned service.

The new feature for IGTV, it is understood, will let people post videos lasting up to one hour and encourage individuals to start their own channels, edging the company into YouTube’s territory.

The videos will also be in the vertical format, which is native to smartphones and was first popularized by Snapchat.

It was also gathered that IGTV will allow all users to create videos up to ten minutes in length but accounts with a large following will be able to post hour-long videos.

Eventually, all users will be able to upload videos of any length, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom said on Wednesday, in what will eventually give Facebook – Instagram’s parent company – more opportunities to sell advertising.

“How we watch is changing quickly, but what we watch is changing too,” Systrom said.

IGTV will be a part of Instagram’s explore tab and will also be a standalone app, where people can watch vertical videos from “many hundreds of creators” who Instagram worked with to help populate the platform ahead of the launch. Some accounts have privileges letting them post videos lasting as long as an hour, Systrom said.

“Right now, we are focused on building engagement, and right now, there are no ads in IGTV from day one,” Systrom said, adding that he sees an opportunity for creators to monetize their followings in the future, similar to how they already can on YouTube.

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