Instagram launches video streaming service to rival YouTube

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media caption Instagram released this video to promote IGTV

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Instagram released this video to promote IGTV

IGTV will start rolling globally over the next few weeks on Android and iOS.

First, being designed and meant for consumption on mobile devices means that videos on IGTV will be vertical and take up the entire screen, letting users hold the phone as they usually do while using it. This will let users upload videos that are up to one-hour long - a huge difference from its incumbent 1 minute-limit.

Taking YouTube by the horns, Instagram has announced, with much fanfare, the launch of IGTV - a video content-only wing of Instagram.

The Instagram TV app is not just for stars like Pons with 25 million followers, either. "We really wanted to separate those two, so you could choose which adventure you wanted to go down". "Among other things, this "lean back" mode could make IGTV a powerful new place for Instagram to put ads".

"It's time for video to move forward, and evolve". At a release event for the app Wednesday, the company announced IGTV now had over 1 billion users.

Instagram has launched a new standalone app for video. Each video can be up to an hour long.

"Just like turning on the TV, IGTV starts playing as soon as you open the app".

There are also some hints of the defunct Vine service in there, appropriate, as some of IGTV's stalwarts like King Bach started on there.

As you watch, you can like videos, leave a comment, and follow others.

TechCrunch has learned that the Instagram longer-form video hub that's launching [today] is called IGTV and it will be part of the Explore tab, according to multiple sources.

According to Systrom, IGTV will not contain advertisements as of yet, but we probably can not expect this to last forever.

"We have a very engaged community who tune into our Stories", Leung says, referring to the vertical video format already available on the main Instagram app.

Video-makers on IGTV will be able to choose to also post their content on Facebook Watch, which could help Facebook's efforts in that section.

With IGTV, Instagram "begins a new chapter of video", perhaps one that Snapchat actually started quite some time ago. Instagram itself now has more than a billion users.

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