Instagram takes on YouTube with IGTV

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Instagram is taking on YouTube.

IGTV is essentially a video platform, similar to YouTube, where each creator has their own channel which users can choose to follow to stay updated on.

IGTV will begin rolling out globally in the coming weeks for iOS and Android.

IGTV launched as its own app on Wednesday in the U.S., though it's possible to view videos and get recommendations for what to watch through the traditional Instagram app. According to an introductory blog post, the answer to that question will involve some of the biggest names in online video.

Instagram said Wednesday it now has more than one billion active users, highlighting surging growth at the Facebook-owned social network focused on photo and video sharing. Facebook itself started an aggressive video push a year ago by heavily promoting its live-streaming technology and also, in some cases, funding original content on-demand.

IGTV will not launch with advertising or make payments to creators, but monetization strategy will be explored in the future, Systrom said.

'Since then video has exploded, we've continued to build video experiences, and in 2016 we launched stories, which brings us to IGTV'. In a press release, Instagram said this is because IGTV is "built for how you actually use your phone", unlike the more traditional horizontal format.

As for who can create content for IGTV, Instagram notes that "anyone can be a creator on IGTV and upload videos in the app or on the web".

And speaking of apps, there really is a separate IGTV app on the way.

Lele Pons, a YouTube sensation who also has amassed 25 million followers on Instagram, plans to launch a new cooking show on IGTV in hopes of increasing her audience and eventually generating more revenue. You can also like, comment and send videos to friends in Direct. My favorite part is you have a scrub bar on videos now, meaning you don't just have to start every video at the beginning and wait for it to loop if you miss the part you wanted to see - which is how Instagram videos currently work.

Instagram TV vs YouTubeIGTV makes finding content easy.

The app will also have a Continue Watching tab, which will retain users' progress through clips they didn't manage to finish in a single sitting.

While Facebook offers no detailed revenue breakdown, eMarketer estimates Instagram will generate $5.48 billion in net U.S. ad revenue this year, up 70.4 percent from last year and accounting for more than one-fourth of Facebook's net mobile ad revenue. Some creators are allowed to upload videos for up to an hour.

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