Instagram has added a new feature, aiming to gain more visibility across competing social media sites, – The ability to download Reels to your mobile camera roll. Once you’ve got your download Reels you then have the ability to share them more widely across the Internet. The feature is currently rolling out in the US.
This is an ability that competing platform TikTok has provided pretty much forever – it’s unlikely that you’ve not been sent a TikTok on Whatsapp, or perhaps stumbled across one on Facebook. Instagram is playing catch up.
You won’t be able to download reels from everyone – only public accounts and even then public accounts will have the ability to block you from downloading their content.
In the US, we’re rolling out the ability to download reels shared by public accounts to your camera roll. Just tap the Share icon on a reel you love and select Download.
Worth mentioning, Reels shared by private accounts can’t be downloaded and public accounts can turn off the ability for people to download their reels in Account Settings.– Adam Mosseri, CEO, Instagram
It appears that when you download content it will be watermarked Instagram, leaving no doubt as to the original source of the content. This means that the more people share Reels the more the recipients will be exposed to the platform and want more. This is one of the ways that TikTok grew so fast – exposure to potential users not already on their app were convinced to download TikTok and give it a go.
If of course you want to download your own Reels, you can still do so without watermarks (albeit perhaps without sound if it’s copyright). This is useful for those that want to upload the same content to multiple platforms and recorded it directly to Instagram in the first instance.