Sooo IGTV dropped and WOAH...
For those who haven't heard, IGTV is Instagram's latest and greatest feature. No, that's an understatement. IGTV is the socialscape's latest nuclear bomb.
So what is it? IGTV is a new platform catering to long-form content up to 60 mins in length in a vertical (or portrait) orientation. You can download the IGTV app and use it independent of your Instagram app, or you can click the little icon next to your DM inbox in the top right. Same thing.
Instagram is finally giving users the ability to post content longer than 60 secs, which is cool, but they're also giving it to us with a whole new world to explore...
Within IGTV, we can swipe up to view the menu. Here we find tabs such as "For You" (suggested channels based on your likes/follows), "Following" (channels of accounts you follow), "Popular" (basically the Explore feed), and "Continue Watching" (episodes you've watched but haven't finished, in case you wanna go back to something later when you have more time or whatever). Lastly, you can also search for users to find new channels yourself.
Instagram is mainly taking pride in two things with this update:
1.) The Layout. This is clearly a mobile-first platform, and they want to make that clear. The vertical orientation prevents us from having to turn our phone sideways and allows for a completely full screen experience (another rip from Snapchat, and YouTube has actually had this capability for a while now too, but okay?).
2.) Embracing the Creators. IG clearly understands that without the creative minds putting in the work to post quality content, they would not have a platform at all. The content found on Instagram is what makes it so amazing. So, IG is making a statement that the creators are what matter...but we'll see how much they really mean that as soon as creators start asking for monetization. As of now, I haven't seen any sort of monetization plan, but I know that's where YouTube tends to piss off their creatives so...time will tell.
All that said, I am unbelievably excited about this addition to my current favorite app. It's a land grab right now to see who can figure out how to exploit IGTV the fastest, so best of luck!
BONUS: I don't see IGTV threatening YouTube in any way whatsoever. First of all, YouTube is the second biggest search engine on the planet. People go there for EVERYTHING. IGTV is not really a content-searchable interface, meaning you aren't gunna be like "Oh no, how do I change this tire? Let me check my IGTV..." No. You're gunna YouTube it because that's still the best place to search by content. Second, horizontal video will ALWAYS be the preferred orientation. It's biological! Our eyes are laid out one next to the other. The horizontal layout (or landscape) is meant to mimic the way our eyes see the world. So unless people start body modifications to put one eye over the other, I don't see IGTV being the "YouTube killer" that some are upholding it as.
What do you think? Love it? Hate it? Wish they never made it? Let's talk.
UPDATE: Since the release of this video, it has come to light that IGTV is only giving 60min upload capabilities to verified and/or large accounts. All other accounts are restricted to 10min IGTV content. Sucks to suck, but that's the game for now. We'll see if they roll out full 60min capabilities to all accounts over time.