Instagram’s has made its presence in everything that has even the slightest association to visual appeal -- fashion, art, photography and even food. The explore/search page has been the section that’s contributed most to the engagement on the platform. While a picture speaks louder than words, videos do much more and that’s why Instagram has a new feature -- Video Channels -- in the explore section to push its video content.
Instagram is owned by Facebook, which has seen a great growth in the video consumption and sharing since they started enabling the auto play feature on our timelines and doubled down on the back-end infrastructure to support it. They even acquired Oculus to dive into the new 360-degree video segment. Now, Instagram seems to be following its footsteps to turn into an appealing source of video.
On the app’s latest update (7.20), when you go to the explore section, you’ll banners labelled with the title of a featured channel. These channels are collections of videos based on your feed or subjects that interest you. When you select a video channel in the explore section, the new interface takes over your screen and starts playing video after video. You can skip a video by tapping under it or go back to the previous one by tapping above the video that’s playing.
That’s not all though, Instagram also wants to learn your viewing habits by letting you send a video to other friends on Instagram through the Inbox feature. All you have to do is tap on the video that’s playing and you get the options to share of view the original post. If you look at the top-right corner of the video, you’ll see three dots. That’s to tell Instgram that it’s showing you content you’re not interested in or offended by it.
With Facebook, Instagram and even Twitter focusing more than before on videos, than pictures and text, it makes us wonder if we’re following the path of the television industry and turning the web into another portal of passive content consumption.