Instagram cuts 60 jobs, eliminating a layer of management at the company

Instagram is developing a “Blend” feature that creates a private feed of Reels recommended for you and a friend. The company told TechCrunch on Friday that the feature is an internal prototype and is not being tested externally.

The feature was first spotted by reverse engineer Alessandro Paluzzi, who regularly discovers social media features in development ahead of their official launch. According to a screenshot posted on X by Paluzzi, a Blend would include “Reels recommendations based on Reels you’ve shared with each other and your Reels interests.”

In other words, if you invited a friend to a “Blend,” Instagram would generate a personalized feed of Reels that it believes the two of you would be interested in. Blend appears to be somewhat similar to Spotify’s functionality of the same name, which launched in 2021 and allows two people to combine their favorite songs into one shared playlist.

The screenshot indicates that Blends would be private between you and the other user and that you would be able to leave a Blend at any time. Instagram didn’t share any specific details about the feature and whether Blends would continuously update with new recommendations or if they would be updated after a certain amount of time.

The feature is designed to make it possible for users to discover new Reels together, which would be a way for Instagram to boost Reels’ discovery and watch time. Since people already send each other Reels via DMs, Instagram would now be using that data to proactively recommend and display Reels that it believes a pair of users would enjoy.

As with any other prototype, it’s unknown when or if Instagram plans to launch the feature externally.

If released, Blend would give Instagram Reels users access to a fun and collaborative feature that isn’t available on its rival platform, TikTok. Though the two products are quite similar, the introduction of “Blend” could give Instagram a slight competitive edge over TikTok, albeit a small one considering TikTok continues to largely dominate the short-form video market. 

Source link