Facebook’s answer to popular social media platform TikTok is set to launch in the coming weeks, according to a report by NBC News.
The company’s rival service is a feature called Reels that will form part of Instagram and, according to the report, will launch in the United States and 50 other countries in a matter of weeks.
Facebook has reportedly been working on this competitor to TikTok for more than a year, and its own service will offer users the ability to share short video clips set to their choice of music – just as TikTok does.
Reels will be added directly to Instagram’s home screen and will include the ability for users to share others’ videos and remix them, the report said.
This new platform will also offer a “Featured Reels” interface, which allows Instagram users to see the most popular and trending Reels on the platform.
“Users will be able to access Reels through a new icon at the bottom of their screen in Instagram and post Reels to Instagram’s main feed or Instagram Explore for public accounts,” the report said.
Facebook app shake-up
The impending launch of Instagram Reels comes as Facebook continues to make major changes to the functionality and integration of its suite of mobile apps.
According to a recent report, the company is looking at integrating WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, allowing users to send messages between the two platforms.
Properties found within Facebook Messenger’s code will allow Messenger to understand if WhatsApp contacts are blocked, the sounds used by push notifications, and details of WhatsApp chats like phone numbers, message counters, and whether the chat is archived.
Notably, however, Facebook does not currently have properties that allow it access to the content of chats, members of a specific group, and profile pictures of contacts.
It is unclear when this functionality will be available, or whether this messaging integration will extend to Instagram.