Instagram is waxing lyrical about taking on TikTok

I mean, it’s been at least a few weeks since Insta copied a feature from another app, so guess what? Instagram is delving into the world of lip-syncing, hoping to one-up the karaoke king of apps, TikTok.

TikTok, the social video app where you can watch people lip-syncing or having dance-offs, has 500 million active users worldwide and is incredibly popular among teenagers. The ability to create amateur music videos is incredibly appealing for young influencers who want to shoot to social stardom. Instagram’s move shows that Facebook, its owner, is determined to reach out to younger audiences in a way that the Facebook app hasn’t.

The latest Instagram feature lets you display lyrics on your Story synced to a soundtrack you add with the Music sticker. To play with the feature, select the Music lens before you shoot your Story or click on the Music sticker after. Choose a song, then you’ll see lyrics pop up which can help you cue the part of the song you wish to play. Afterwards, you can scroll through different animation styles like the traditional karaoke teleprompter, a typewriter effect that only reveals lyrics as they’re sung, and a big and SHOUTY billboard font.

And TikTok wasn’t slow to react. Last week it also pushed out a text feature for overlaying captions to videos. Previously, users could only add text to their videos using third-party apps like Snapchat or Instagram Stories. Some users even opt for the full analog experience of holding up a piece of paper with handwritten captions (we salute you!).

All of these features are about keeping video content on social from going stagnant. The polished, painstakingly perfect Instagram aesthetic is done with. Fans are tired of perfection, which breeds envy and feels fake. The LOLs, OMGs, and the rough edges of real life are becoming the new ‘look’ of social media.

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