Instagram introduces auto-play video with sound feature

Instagram over the weekend introduced auto-play video with sound for both Android and Apple users.


This means that once a user turned on sound for a video in their feed, all other videos will start to play automatically. Heaven or a nightmare? It’s a point of perspective.

For advertisers at least, that’s a welcome news as they want their ad seen as well as heard,  but the same cannot be said for the average user who just wants to look at some pictures or watch videos. Some may love the new feature as it means that they do not have to individually turn on sounds for every video, yet another segment of users may find the feature irksome when scrolling through their feed and hearing unwanted audio, especially when they are ad-related.


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Here’s how it will work

When a person enters the app, all videos will start with the sound off, whether they’re ads or unpaid posts. During that session, if a person taps the volume for any of the videos, the rest will automatically play with volume for the remainder of the session. Reverting to mute on an individual video will make mute the default for subsequent clips for the rest of the session. The next session the setting returns to volume off.



Volume is becoming a key battleground for Facebook and Snapchat, industry watchers said. Snapchat has said that more than two-thirds of video ads play with sound on. That had to be a sore point for Facebook, which had been selling advertisers a sound-off experience on the theory that most users don’t want to be assaulted by sound as they scroll down the News Feed.


Facebook experienced backlash earlier this year when it announced it would be moving from silent autoplay video to going by your device’s current mute status. That rollout has moved slowly, though, signalling that Facebook understands that sound could surprise some users.




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