Over the Halloween, Instagram introduced a new feature in its app that allows users to view a stream of curated video content related to an event or topic. The feed is similar to Twitter Moments and Facebook's Live Stories.
The feature, which is currently exclusive to users in the United States, showcases the "best videos" gleaned from users' friends and others. For instance, over the weekend, users saw content made by popular filmmaker Zach King, and also of astronaut Scott Kelly. The feed also showcased videos starring Taylor Swift, Barack Obama, and Michelle Obama among others. The feed is curated in real-time by an editorial team at Instagram.
Users are able to navigate through the section and watch videos without seeing the usual text description, bordering, and stats like likes count. It was an interesting approach as unlike Twitter Moments, which arguably offers too much information, Instagram seems to declutter everything to enhance the experience.
"This is a new way to experience events and big moments, as they happen, through the eyes of the Instagram community," Gabe Madway, an Instagram spokesperson, told Re/code in an email. "There's a ton of great video on Instagram, and we wanted to bring it all into one viewing experience. People love to come together and celebrate big events on Instagram, so it makes a lot of sense to do this on Halloween, which is one of our biggest days."
The timing of the rollout is interesting as it happens only a few weeks after Twitter announced Moments on its micro-blogging platform. The idea behind the feature is simple. Instagram wants to make it easier for people to know what's the talking point of the hour, and bolster user engagement.