YouTube's new Reels feature will let you publish stories ala Instagram

Randall Craig
December 1, 2017

In an attempt to give video creators more ways to express themselves and engage with fans, YouTube has unveiled its own take on Snapchat Stories and Instagram Stories, where you can capture photos or videos, then decorate them with text, art, filters, and more, and broadcast them to followers via a stitched-together reel that'll play out like a story to viewers. Instead, it will appear in a dedicated tab, separate from a creator's main list of videos. Under this feature, creators can record a few videos of up to 30 seconds each.

Reels appears to act more as an add-on feature to a creator's main channel, similar to the social-media-style features in the Community tab that YouTube launched previous year for select creators.

Moreover, as Stories disappeared after 24 hours, Reels does not have any expiry date or time. Just like Stories on other platforms, a creator can add any number of videos to their Reels. We're also bringing creator-focused features like linking to YouTube videos and YouTube-y stickers.

But the move underscores YouTube's continued attempt to become more social and community-oriented. Called Reels, the format is now available in beta in the Community tab, which is open to popular creators. YouTube doesn't provide a time frame for when it expects to introduce Reels to all of its creators. From the video, we can see that you can create Reels of different categories, and add videos accordingly.

Reels are being tested among a small group of the YouTube video creators.

The feature is now being rolled out to creators who have over 10,000 YouTube subscribers, so you're probably going to need to have a pretty healthy community of subscribers if you even want to have the option.

According to TechCrunch, Reels will be given their own tab in the YouTube mobile app. Users will also have the opportunity to evaluate the Reels, putting them huskies or dslan. YouTube also says that it has optimized notifications for Community.

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