Instagram plans to allow video downloads for up to an hour and is looking to roll out a professional video hub as part of its service.
The Facebook-owned photo-sharing site has had conversations in recent weeks with content creators and editors about producing long-running videos for the platform, according to a Wall Street Journal report, which announced the new Instagram video shots.
A separate TechCrunch report said Instagram is to launch a “professionally produced video entertainment hub,” which could either be part of Instagram’s Explore tab, exist in a new tab in the app, or be launched. as a separate application.
According to TechCrunch, Instagram’s dedicated long-form video house will offer content, including scripted shows and music videos in full-screen and vertically-oriented 4K resolution. The WSJ also reported that Instagram will focus on vertical video.
The move will see Instagram face off against rivals like YouTube and Snapchat, which has partnered with a host of major TV broadcasters and publishers like National Geographic, Vice, Comedy Central, CNN and ESPN to launch its Snapchat Discover platform in 2015.
It will also mark Facebook’s second major surge in video content, following the launch of its Facebook Watch platform last year – a home for episodic content that Facebook says is designed for creators and publishers to “ find an audience, build a community of passionate fans, and earn money for their work ”.
Instagram plans to allow creators and publishers to make money from their lengthy videos, although it has not finalized the details of ad formats or revenue distribution, according to TechCrunch. The tech news site also reported that Facebook won’t prepay Instagram creators for long videos like it does for Facebook Watch content.
“Instagram playing with the idea of introducing an hour-long video is a remarkable milestone for the platform which prided itself on short content – originally 15 seconds and then 60 seconds,” said Josh Krichefski, CEO of MediaCom UK media agency.
“The idea of hour-long videos would be a radical change for the social media platform and reflect consumer demand to watch different types of content of different lengths.”
Instagram currently allows users to upload video profile posts up to 60 seconds long and 15 second video clips to Instagram Stories. Users can also post live video for up to an hour, but once a live video is finished it is no longer visible in the app unless a user shares a replay of their Instagram story, which disappears after 24 hours.