- Jane Manchun Wong
- Reverse app engineer Jane Manchun Wong discovered that Instagram is working on something called “Clips,” a new camera mode for creating Instagram Stories.
- “Clips” seems to mirror many features central to short-form video app TikTok: It would allow users to string together recorded clips into one video, add music, and adjust each clip’s speed and length.
- Instagram has a history of mimicking features from other social media apps and integrating them on its own platform.
- Instagram declined Business Insider’s request for comment on the report.
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Instagram appears to be working on a new feature for Stories that allow users to create videos in a way that’s quite similar to how videos are created on popular short-form video app TikTok.
The new feature, called “Clips,” was discovered by reverse engineer Jane Manchun Wong, who often finds unreleased features and additions on social platforms. According to Wong, “Clips” allows users to post videos on their Stories that are recorded in snippets and then spliced together. The feature also seems to allow users to overlay music over their clips, and adjust the length and speed of those video segments.
Instagram is working on “Clips”, a Story Camera feature “inspired” by TikTok
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) September 11, 2019
If those features sound familiar to you, you’re not the only one. These video-editing abilities are similar to the ones readily available on short-form video app TikTok, a platform with more than 1 billion downloads. TikTok users create content, ranging from comedic sketches to one-man-show song covers, by using the app’s ability to record multiple clips and piece them together into a 60-second masterpiece.
Furthermore, TikTok’s roots are based in now-defunct app Musical.ly, whose content was largely users lip-syncing to popular songs. TikTok still offers users a full library of songs and “soundtracks” to put in their videos, spurring on viral music-based trends like the one that made “Old Town Road” so popular.
Instagram declined to comment on Wong’s findings of the “Clips” feature. Wong told Business Insider she discovered “Clips” on Instagram in early July.
This isn’t the first time that features on one platform have been mimicked by competing social media apps, who then recreate and integrate the similar feature into their own platform. Instagram and its parent company, Facebook, have done this several times.
However, it remains to be seen whether Instagram – when and if it releases the “Clips” feature – will be able to draw away users from TikTok in favor of the photo-sharing platform.