Facebook reels like Instagram and TikTok launched globally in 150 countries

Deepak Gupta February 23, 2022
Updated 2022/02/23 at 5:05 AM

Facebook is rolling out its short video Reels feature to more than 150 countries, its owner Meta Platforms said on Tuesday, in a move to expand its fastest-growing content format.

The social media giant, which recently lost a third of its market value after a dismal earnings report, singled out Reels as a top priority.

Meta launched Reels on Instagram in 2020 and Facebook in 2021 in response to the explosively popular short video app TikTok, owned by Chinese tech giant ByteDance.

“Reels is already by far our fastest growing content format and today we are making it available to everyone on Facebook globally,” Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

The company, which says video now accounts for half the time people spend on Facebook, also announced new ways for creators to make money from the Reels feature.

He said he was expanding his program to pay bonuses to creators to more countries and was testing overlay ads using banners and stickers for creators to earn ad revenue. It would launch full-screen ads between reels soon.

Meta said during its latest earnings call that it has faced impacts from Apple’s privacy changes to its operating system, which have made it harder for brands to target and measure their ads on Facebook and Instagram. It also cited macroeconomic issues such as supply chain disruptions.

The 18-year-old tech giant last month also warned that it expects to slow revenue growth in the next quarter due to increased competition for users’ time and a shift in engagement to features like reels, which generate less revenue.

In its Tuesday announcement, Meta also said it would release updates for users to make and see Facebook Reels in new places, such as in the Stories feature, the Watch tab, and at the top of the news feed. In some countries, users will also see suggested reels in their feed.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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