Instagram could launch its 'IGTV' long-form video hub today

Instagram unveils new IGTV app for long-form vertical video, now has 1 billion users

Instagram has launched IGTV at an event in San Francisco featuring numerous Instagram creators.

Mobile-first: IGTV is built for how you naturally use and hold your phone, so videos are full screen and vertical. IGTV videos are full screen and vertical.

"In IGTV, the creators are the channels", Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom said via a press release.

Facebook announced Tuesday it would be launching a series of interactive shows on its own video outlet, Facebook Watch.

Curated: IGTV is focused on the creators you love most and already follow on Instagram. There's four different categories for the videos: For You, Following, Popular, and Continue Watching. Instead of the photos and short clips you're used to, you will now see extensive videos from IGTV users on the Explore tab.

"We have a very engaged community who tune into our Stories", Leung says, referring to the vertical video format already available on the main Instagram app.

IGTV is simple to use, it starts playing as soon as you open the app.

More news: Google Brings Android Messages to the Web

"There're no ads in IGTV today", Systrom added.

IGTV will be making its way to users over the coming weeks. Younger audiences are apparently spending more time watching amateur content creators in place of professionals. These will be challenging the 10-minute YouTube vlog maximum, and be than the one minute maximum videos the app allows today, and videos will be able to range from 15 seconds to 60 minutes.

In September, Instagram said it had some 800 million monthly active users.

The launch comes amid a shift in video viewing habits away from traditional television to online platforms including Netflix and Hulu, and with more people watching both professional and user content on services like YouTube. Creators will have their own dedicated channels, too. When you follow a creator on IGTV, you'll also follow their account on Instagram.

Taking inspiration from Snapchat's Discover section, the app is meant for users to grow their network into large followings. To celebrate, the Facebook-owned photo site is launching a true video platform that goes beyond the short throwaway videos the service now offers. The app also features an option to share IGTV videos on Facebook Watch, another TV-like service provided by IG's parent-site.

The announcement was made at an event hosted by Instagram chief Kevin Systrom in San Francisco.

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