Instagram Extends Reels Length to 60 Seconds

The app is also adding caption stickers

In an announcement via its official Twitter account, Instagram said on Tuesday it is extending the length of its Reels from 30 seconds to a full minute and adding caption stickers.

The new caption stickers covert audio into captions so users can enjoy Reels videos without audio. Captions are already a part of Stories and are seeing wider implementation. The new feature is currently available in a few English-speaking countries, with plans to include other languages and additional countries soon.

Instagram on phone

The change comes as Instagram is shifting from a photo sharing app to a more entertainment- and video-focused app, following its introduction of Reels to compete with the success of TikTok. Reels initially started as 15-second videos. The length was quickly extended to 30 seconds less than a month later.

Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, said in a Twitter post that the app is no longer a "square photo-sharing app" and that users are coming to be entertained. Reels and Stories have changed the scope of Instagram as the company changes fit. Mosseri stated that in the next couple of months the company will "experiment" with a number of strategies, such as reconfiguring recommendations.

In addition to the Reels update, Instagram recently announced that it is adding new protections for teenage users by defaulting them into private accounts for anyone under the age of 18. The move is a way to protect those young people from "unwanted DMS or comments from strangers."

It’s unknown what other new features Instagram has planned for the future. Will Instagram continue taking cues from TikTok or add something original?

Earlier this month, TikTok extended its video length to 3 minutes, and in June, the app implemented Jumps, which are mini-apps that creators can add to their videos. It's not unreasonable to expect Instagram will continue to implement new features to compete with these TikTok additions.

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