Instagram videos on iOS and Android now replay automatically, a Vine-like looping feature that could force users to watch all the way through.
In an update Tuesday to its iOS and Android apps, the Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing service changed the way videos uploaded to the service play. Previously, they played once and then stopped. Now, they play continuously with no way to pause them. However, users can tap the screen to mute sound. Instagram videos played on the web can still be paused.
Instagram said that the auto-looping — which mimics the way Vine videos automatically replay — would not eat up additional bandwidth, something that would have been of concern to mobile users on limited data plans. Vine is owned by Twitter.
If an Instagram user encounters a video in their feed, they can scroll past it, but it will start to play again if they scroll back to it. This feature is likely very attractive to advertisers, who have been using the service as a way to share photo and video messages.
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