Rumors are circulating that Facebook may be adding video to Instagram at its June 20 product announcement. Many news outlets suggested that Facebook would be introducing a news reader prior to this speculation.
The introduction of video to Instagram would be a direct response Twitter’s video sharing service, Vine. Since its public release for iOS in January, Vine has grown significantly in popularity and its release for Android earlier this month has only bolstered this following.
There are several clues suggesting that video may be the next step for Instagram, which now boasts of 100 million active users. For example, Facebook has prevented Vine from using its friend-finding feature. By doing this, Facebook looks embed users into its platform first, rather than a service like Twitter.
Another instance of Facebook protecting its brand is how it is preventing Instagram uploads from being posted directly onto Twitter. Users can still share Instagram photos on Twitter, but users need to click the link to see them. By directing users back to the Instagram platform, users will spend more time in the photo sharing application. It also helps with ubiquity for the Facebook and Instagram brands.
From another perspective, it would also be strategic for Facebook to introduce short video sharing to its ecosystem. With talks of adding auto-play video ads into the News Feed, Facebook could be looking to familiarize users with the concept. With more users sharing short videos, video ad units may not seem as intrusive.
For the June 20 product announcement, Facebook sent snail mail invitations with the outline of a coffee mug. Though this motif would suggest that Facebook would be announcing a news product, some have speculated this as simply a diversion to the actual announcement. With the introduction of hashtags last week, it is also possible the social network may be introducing an improved blogging platform made more powerful with Graph Search. Though it may be one of these assumptions or the other, it is likely that Facebook will add all of these features in the nearby future.
Main image courtesy of Shutterstock.