Instagram has announced a new “captions sticker” for Stories and Reels, making its short videos more accessible for users. It automatically transcribes speech in videos, making it easier for users who are deaf or hard of hearing to engage with the content. This will also allow other users to watch and engage with Instagram Stories and Reels without having the sound on. People who are not native English speakers will also benefit from having captions in videos.
To use this feature, you first need to record a video in Stories or Reels in the Instagram app. You can also upload an existing video file from your phone’s gallery. Now open the stickers tray and look for the new captions sticker. Once applied, it will automatically convert any speech in the video to text.
The auto-captions will not work 100 percent accurately all the time, of course. But Instagram will let you edit the text to correct any word or phrase that wasn’t transcribed properly or to simply correct punctuation and spelling. Moreover, like the existing text options in Stories, you can also edit the text color, position, and font as you please. Instagram doesn’t yet offer an option to highlight the caption text though. Hopefully, we will get that option soon.
Instagram launches captions sticker for Stories and Reels
Instagram already offers captions in IGTV and the Threads app. The company was spotted developing a captions feature for Stories in August last year. As of March this year, some people could see the new captions sticker in their sticker tray in the Instagram app. The sticker didn’t work around that time but it was clear that the company was testing the new feature. A couple of months later, it has now officially arrived.
The new captions sticker is available immediately in video Stories and is coming soon to Reels. It will be initially available only in English and to users in a handful of English-speaking countries. However, Instagram promises to roll out the new feature to other countries and support more languages in the future.
Instagram’s auto-captions feature for Stories and Reels comes on the heels of TikTok announcing a similar captions feature for its app. Instagram parent company Facebook is also said to be working on a captions feature option for Facebook Stories. Twitter also announced a number of accessibility features, including captioning, for its audio chat rooms Spaces, which rolled out to users earlier this week.
Sound off 🗣
…with sound off 🔇
Now you can add a captions sticker in Stories (coming soon to Reels) that automatically turns what you say into text.
We’re starting in a handful of countries and hope to expand soon. pic.twitter.com/OAJjmFcx4RAdvertisement
— Instagram (@instagram) May 4, 2021