Facebook is set to launch its own version of TikTok next month.
The social media giant recently announced plans to release Instagram Reels, a video platform that lets people create interactive short clips set to music. The app’s functionality sounds a lot like TikTok, which is wildly popular among smartphone-toting teens and young adults. Mark Zuckerberg is probably riding on the fact that TikTok could get banned in the US soon, with other countries also open to follow suit.
Reels, which will live inside of the app’s Stories feature, allows users to record and edit short-form videos with audio and music soundtracks — akin to what users already do on TikTok. Facebook first started testing Reels with users in Brazil in November, before rolling out last month to France and Germany.
This is not the first time that Facebook and Instagram make their own versions of features which would have turned out to be a hit on other platforms.
For example, earlier this year, Facebook added its own version of bitmoji – the personalized avatars well-known to Snapchat users – remember everyone passing through the Avatar phase during isolation?.
In 2016, Instagram copied Stories from Snapchat. And the following year, Messenger and WhatsApp got a similar tool.