Instagram is taking a leaf from another vine — quite literally — after it updated its app to make videos on its service loop in users’ feeds, just as they do on Twitter’s video service, Vine.
Facebook-owned Instagram introduced 15-second videos to its hugely popular photo sharing service 18 months ago. Despite also adding a very cool hyperlapse video app to encourage more clips, the video side has yet to catch up and it’s fair to say that Instagram is still best known for photos.
That’s almost certainly a major reason for making clips repeat over and over, although it will also be a boon for advertisers, who will now enjoy better odds that their videos will be seen by Instagram’s 300 million monthly users. It also opens the potential for a community of interesting music and comedy videos that play on the loop, there are already plenty of good examples of that on Vine. (In addition, adding loops provides a metric to measure the exposure of ad spots and videos.)
The addition is a subtle one from Instagram. In fact, the video feature is so underused among my friends that I unwittingly missed it despite opening the app today. My phone auto-loaded the update, but there are so few videos in my feed that I didn’t notice the new feature until I checked the release notes.
Personally, I still prefer to wacth videos via Vine or YouTube, but Instagram assures users who do consume moving images on its service that looping videos won’t eat up more data than the previous format.