YouTube Shorts vs Instagram Reels: Difference and Comparison

People love watching short videos. The concept of the short video was launched a long time ago and many platforms have been launched based on this type of content.

Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts are also the particular types of short videos made for spreading entertainment as well as information and are very popular among every age group.

Key Takeaways

  1. YouTube Shorts are 60 seconds or shorter videos on YouTube’s platform.
  2. Instagram Reels are 30 seconds or shorter videos on Instagram’s platform.
  3. Both platforms cater to creators seeking to share short, engaging content but differ in maximum video length.

YouTube Shorts vs Instagram Reels

YouTube Shorts are short-form, vertical videos lasting up to 60 seconds, designed for quick, mobile viewing on the YouTube platform. Instagram Reels are also short-form videos, up to 30 seconds in length, integrated within the Instagram platform, featuring music and various effects.

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YouTube Shorts were introduced in 2020 following the trendy Tiktok videos and Instagram Reels. YouTube Shorts are 60 second long videos that are used to help creators interact with the audience.

There is a whole section in YouTube now for shorts. Just like other similar features shorts also use trendy music to offer the users that help them to create attractive short videos.

Instagram reels refer to the short videos created by people. They are. Very beneficial for the branding and attracting a large audience. Instagram reels came in 2020 and became trendy within a week.

Instagram saw an opportunity when Tiktok was banned from India and became successful in dominating the entertainment segment by providing desirable content.

Comparison Table

Parameters Of ComparisonYouTube ShortsInstagram Reels
PlatformThe platform on which YouTube Shorts are created by people and watched by their audience is YouTube itself.The platform on which Instagram Reels are created by people and watched by their audience is Instagram.
LaunchedYouTube launched a new feature known as shorts on 14 September 2020 to follow the trend. Instagram launched a new feature known as reels on 27 July 2020 to give competition to Tiktok.
Time frameThe limit of time a person has to make a YouTube Shorts has always been 60 seconds.Initially, a person has 15 to 30 seconds when making an Instagram Reel which was changed in successive updates.
Content qualityYouTube Shorts are related to the channel’s video and have more information than cringe. Talking about the quality of content, Instagram reels have a huge amount of worthless content.
TrafficYouTube Shorts generates traffic for the content creators by using various types of hashtags based on the topics. Instagram Reels generates traffic for the content creators by the choice of users or followers.

What is YouTube Shorts?

YouTube added “Shorts” as an upgrade to the YouTube app the previous year. YouTube shorts are the quickest way to lure the attention of the audience by just creating a creative video of a few seconds.

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As it is apparent from its name, Shorts allow you to make shorter videos up to one minute. It is different from those lengthy videos which take much time and data to upload.

Even the small content creators also collect revenue from the shorts by monetizing their short videos, which was not possible on other videos without fulfilling the terms and conditions of YouTube.

Moreover, there are no limitations on the type of content as well.

It can be related to any type of genre. For instance, music, comedy, literature, studies, cooking, etc. In addition, people can show their creativity to the world through shorts on their smartphones.

The workaholic nature of people leads them to have less leisure time and thus instead of watching lengthy videos on YouTube people tend to watch shorter videos like comical videos to relieve their stress.

Although the time limit is considered as the biggest drawback of shorts, still a large number of shorts are posted by several creators daily on youtube.

youtube shorts

What is Instagram Reels?

Instagram reels are a platform to create content based on short videos. The video can be related to entertainment, motivation, or any idea of a content creator.

These were introduced by Instagram when the Government of India banned Tiktok in India after its huge success.

This might be the reason that the working of reels resembles that of Tiktok. Reels became prominent among Instagram users shortly after its launch.

Its resemblance with Tiktok made it easier to use. Reels are widely used to showcase different entertaining videos. Reels remain in the feed of a creator permanently after being posted, unless it is deleted.

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These have also become a source of branding of products for several companies reaching common people easily. Instagram also pays several content creators after reaching a certain limit of followers, which is set by it.

So, these can be categorized as a source of income too. On the contrary, Reels have been admitted as time-consuming and addictive, especially for youth.

Watching reels will make you waste a lot of time, although these are for a few seconds only. Overall, Reels can be a boon for a content creator to show his talent to the world but on the other hand, it can be a curse for a student.

instagram reels

Main Differences Between YouTube Shorts and Instagram Reels

  1. Instagram reels came in July 2020. On the other hand, YouTube introduced the new update ‘Shorts’ in September of the same year.
  2. Instagram introduced reels to take over the market when TikTok was banned. While YouTube introduced shorts to facilitate video-makers to make more catchy videos.
  3. It is observed by many factors that Instagram reels do not necessarily represent quality content, while YouTube Shorts presents relatable content.
  4. To create an Instagram Reel, a person must have an Instagram account. On the other hand, to create YouTube Shorts, a person should have a YouTube channel.
  5. The engagement of Instagram reels depends on the number of followers and choice of the users. While YouTube shorts enhance its engagement by providing hashtags.
Difference Between YouTube Shorts and Instagram Reels

Last Updated : 19 November, 2023

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