Earlier this week, a TechCrunch reader discovered what appears to be an upcoming music steaming sticker in the Instagram Stories code. The prototype code suggests that Instagram users will soon be able to add licensed music from popular record labels to their Instagram Stories.
The code shows that users can search for music by genre and mood, or select from a list of trending tracks. We're assuming that Instagram will add a way for users to search for individual tracks too.
Another TechCrunch reader—Jane Manchun Wong—was able to view a prototype of the music sticker on her Android device. As you can see above, the prototype isn't ready for prime time, but gives us a good look at how the music sticker will function.
Additionally, Wong notes that Instagram Stories recognized the song she was listening to on her phone and automatically created a sticker for it. Pretty cool if you ask us.
Facebook Is in Talks With Record Labels, Too
Facebook has been in talks with record labels for years, and this is probably why. It's been long rumored that Facebook was planning to enter the saturated music streaming space, but a music sticker in Instagram Stories seems more likely with the direction that Facebook is taking Instagram Stories.
It's also worth noting that Instagram competitor Snapchat tried striking deals with record labels in 2014. However, the project was put on hold due to revenue sharing agreements with labels. As of 2018, we're unsure of if Snapchat is pursuing music again or if it has plans to add soundtracks to its platform as well.
The Bottom Line
There are no concrete details on how Facebook will implement Instagram's music sticker beyond these leaks. However, we imagine that Facebook will let users add short snippets of songs to Instagram Story videos, and possibly photos too.
When implemented, the music sticker will be a huge new feature for Instagram. Adding a licensed music platform to Instagram Stories gives creators a new (and legal) outlet for making short music videos. Currently, Instagram users can have their Stories taken down for copyright violation if copyrighted music is heard in a Story.
Facebook isn't shy about adding new features to Instagram. Over the past month, Instagram announced video calling and added its own version of portrait mode to the app. We're unsure of when Facebook will formally announce Instagram's music sticker, but we'll write a blog post when they do.
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