Instagram this week launched IGTV at an event in San Francisco. IGTV is a new app for watching long-form, vertical video from Instagram creators. While there’s a stand-alone IGTV app, users also will be able to watch from within the Instagram app, so the community of 1 billion Instagram users can use it as soon as it’s made available.
IGTV is built for how users use their phone, so videos are full screen and vertical, according to the company. Also, unlike on Instagram, videos aren’t limited to one minute. Instead, each video can be up to an hour long.
“We’ve made it simple, too. Just like turning on the TV, IGTV starts playing as soon as you open the app. 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,” said Kevin Systrom, co-founder & CEO of Instagram. “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.”
IGTV has channels, with Instagram creators controlling their own channels.
“When you follow a creator on Instagram, their IGTV channel will show up for you to watch,” Systrom said. “Anyone can be a creator-you can upload your own IGTV videos in the app or on the web to start your own channel.”