Instagram Is Testing Out Ninety-Second Reels With A Limited Number Of Users

Reports reveal that Instagram is testing the waters with a form of Reels, which allows the community to make ninety second videos instead of the usual sixty.

Reels has been perhaps the biggest milestone in Instagram’s history by far. While the platform is still known as the place for aesthetic pictures and whatnot, Reels have carved out a massive niche for themselves and are currently the most viewed media on the platform. It’s hard to see why not: videos have always attracted bigger numbers across any social media outlet, and short-form content has been on a never-ending grind to the top since the 2010’s. Whether it be our incremental lack of patience with anything that can’t convey its meaning within 2 minutes, or it be the ease with which shorter videos can be made, short-form content has resonated with millennials and gen Z in a way that not even YouTube could. Vine, despite its rather short lifespan, was almost entirely responsible for internet culture and memes during the mid-2010’s, and TikTok seems to have taken over its role in stride. Reels and YouTube Shorts are also gaining massive amounts of traction, and even Snapchat aggregated multiple short videos under the umbrella term of Spotlight for all to see.

Instagram has been rather patient with regards to its investment in Reels. The Meta-owned brand took its time, slowly introducing the new format one region at a time, all the while gauging interest and engagement. Once the feature became fully accessible, however, it also wasted no time in establishing creator programs and funds in the interest of inviting as many content creators as possible. Maybe that has a lot to do with Reels’ current success, maybe it doesn’t. All we know is that Reels got enough traction that the same video interface was introduced to all other videos on the platform, and now Instagram’s interested in slowly stretching the time limit.

An increased time limit is good news in many ways, since it allows for more creativity from a user’s perspective. Of course, there’s always the question that at which point does short-form content bleed over into long-form if time limits on videos keep on increasing? I don’t think this is a question that Instagram needs to grapple with right now, but it’s definitely food for thought as we look towards a future where short-form content seems to be perhaps the most viable.

H/T: Jonah Manzano / Matt Navarra

Read next: Meta Declares Reels As Its Most Popular Feature Of Instagram Where Users Allocate 20% Of Their Time
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