Earlier this week, news broke that Facebook is reportedly prototyping horizontally swipeable cards to combine News Feed and Stories into a single feed. Why? It's doubling down on Stories.
Instagram (owned by Facebook) rolled out Stories over two years ago, directly copying the feature (down to the name) from Snapchat Stories. Since then, Stories has supercharged Instagram and Facebook, slowed down Snapchat and grown to 500 million daily active users. A few months ago, Instagram also briefly switched to a horizontal, tap-to-advance feed “by accident.”
Mishap or not, Stories are starting to dominate social media platforms across the board. A few weeks ago, Snapchat announced a new developer kit to integrate Snapchat Stories into other apps like Tinder and Houseparty. This week, Google announced its rolling out AMP Stories — its own answer to Stories — to Google Search, meaning they'll have a dedicated section in search results.
A new startup called Jumprope ($4.5M raised) just launched on Product Hunt to make Stories-like how-to videos. The app lets anyone easily create videos that are shot as casually as Instagram Stories, and it helps people discover how to do everything from yoga poses to oil changes.
The key to Stories is that they're visual — they focus on photos and videos in short snippets of content. As a creator, they're easy to shoot and edit. And as a viewer, you can control the speed at which you consume them.
We've seen a few other startups make inroads in this space as well. There's Supergreat for honest makeup reviews. There's Buffer Stories Creator and Insense Stories Video Editor for editing Stories outside of Instagram's limits. There's Medium Series for Medium and Twitter Moments for Twitter. And of course, there's another product called Stories for watching trending YouTube videos.