Instagram is Planning To Replace the Discover Icon with the Reels Button on the Lower Menu Bar, And Some Users Are Not Happy

Last week, Instagram rolled out the TikTok-like Reels feature in fifty regions including the United States, amid the ongoing speculation about the future of the ByteDance-owned TikTok in the United States. The United States government has given the TikTok app till September 15th of this year to come up with a deal to become US-owned. On the launch of the Reels feature, Josh Constine, a tech analyst, noted that one of the major flaws of this feature is that there is no front-page presence for the Reels functionality. This makes it difficult for users to find Reels content on the Instagram app.

Constine tweeted that the feature needs homepage presence on the app and it must allow content creators to share just to Instagram’s algorithm. If the Facebook-owned platform wants to build a TikTok competitor, it needs to consider the immediacy of the TikTok feed. It seems that the company is aware of the same since many Instagram users in Germany have reported that they are seeing a new layout in the Instagram app. The company is testing the Reels button in the lower menu bar.

Instagram has moved the Discover magnifying glass icon to the top, and now the Discover tab appears next to the Direct tab. The Reels button is now where the Discover magnifying glass icon was before. With the Reels button, Instagram users can get to a page that is similar to TikTok’s For You Page. Users can see short videos, and with a swipe-up, they get to the next video. The new change gives the Reels feature a lot more focus.

@AJ_Malakai posted screenshots on Twitter displaying how the updated format looks, and these screenshots were shared by Matt Navarra, a social media app researcher. The play button with a circle is now the Reels tab which has replaced the Discover button in the lower menu bar.


Constine also notes on Twitter that the Reels algorithm of Instagram is not on par with TikTok stream. The algorithm of TikTok is considered to be the key element in the success of the TikTok application, with the focus of the platform shifted to content instead of contacts. Anyone can see al videos posted by TikTok users unless a TikTok users chooses to make their profile private. On the other hand, only your friends can see your posts on the Instagram app. It is not yet clear whether the Reels button will replace the Discover button in the long term or not.


Read next: The Sneaky Features of Instagram on Web!

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