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Instagram has begun rollout of a new feature which will allow users to see how many people have watched their videos. In the coming weeks, users will be able to see view counts on all videos posted.
The view count feature will appear below the video, replacing the previous like icon. However, now users can tap on the view count to check the number of likes and views a video has received. The feature will also show users the profile of all those who have either viewed or liked the video as well.
In a blog posted on 11 February, Instagram said: "Over the next few weeks, you'll start to see how many times people have watched a video on Instagram. Views are the most widely expected form of feedback on video. Adding view counts is the first of many ways you'll see video on Instagram get better this year."
Similar to Facebook, Instagram will consider a video as viewed only if a user has played the video for more than three seconds. This means that the social media platform's popular auto-play feature will not interfere with its latest view count feature. If a user simply scrolls past a video, the app will not count it as having been viewed.
Although Instagram's view count feature will not exactly be a big thing for the average user, it may come in handy for celebrities and brands in gauging how their content is faring on the app, especially when compared to rival photo and video-centric social media apps like Vine or YouTube. "We think it's important to help someone like Zach King, who is getting 5m views/day, or Rachel Ryle, who is getting hundreds of thousands of views/video, understand the depth of ways people are engaging with their videos," Instagram said, according to a report in the Verge.
Instagram has already begun testing the view count feature with a select group of users and a global rollout is expected to be completed in the next few weeks.