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BREAKING: Instagram Releases “IGTV” to Host Long-Form Videos

Robbie Janney

Instagram has just announced a new addition to its platform for hosting up to hour-long videos. Here’s what it means for content creators.

All images via Instagram.

Today, social media giant Instagram hosted a big reveal event celebrating the milestone of hitting 1 billion users, and to announce its brand-new update — a platform to host long-form, vertical videos called “IGTV.”

IGTV is both a standalone app and an addition to the current Instagram layout. It allows users to upload videos that are up to an hour long — as well as creating a new platform for your favorite content creators to upload original videos. This is a huge step up from its current model, which only allows videos up to 60-seconds long.

BREAKING: Instagram Releases "IGTV" to Host Long-Form Videos — IGTV

One of its crowning features is centering the platform on full-screen, vertical videos, unlike its previous square videos and YouTube’s horizontal videos. After seeing Snapchat’s success with its vertical video channels, Instagram decided to follow suit and adapt to the new media landscape of the mobile viewing experience.

The IGTV app mimics conventional television viewing, with videos automatically playing right when you open the app. You will be able to switch through “channels” — which are really the streams of specific content creators. Don’t worry: they have still their discovery algorithms to help you discover new content, too.

You don’t have to search to start watching content from people you already follow on Instagram and others you might like based on your interests. You can swipe up to discover more — switch between “For You,” “Following,” “Popular” and “Continue Watching.” You can also like, comment and send videos to friends in Direct. —Instagram

BREAKING: Instagram Releases "IGTV" to Host Long-Form Videos — IGTV

This new platform opens up a whole new world to creators trying to enter the mobile landscape. Anyone can upload to IGTV — it’s not just limited to users with a certain follower count. This means that filmmakers will have the ability to upload their long-form content (as long as it conforms to the vertical parameters) and share it with people around the world. With the capability of web upload for video, creators can take their time working on their content on their favorite NLEs, then upload directly from their computers.

I foresee this app paving the way for narrative vertical video that has already started incubating in other platforms such as Snapchat. It will be a whole new way to experience content — so grab your phone, go out, and start recording so you can get in on the ground floor of this new platform!

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