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Instagram’s Playback takes on Spotify’s 2021 recap feature

Instagram today announced Playback, a feature that lets you replay a curated selection of your stories shared throughout the year. It is reminiscent of the recap features we get on apps like Spotify, YouTube Music, and Facebook, so it’s only natural Instagram would get in on the action.

Playback makes use of Instagram’s Story Archive feature to surface up to 10 story posts, which a user can then share with their followers or close friends. Interestingly, Instagram does appear to take advantage or even inspiration from the very popular third-party Top Nine trends. Rather, the company is apparently trying to copy Spotify’s Wrapped format, taking advantage of the fact that it has its own platform for the recap to be shared, unlike Spotify.

Instagram's Playback feature.

The format has become popularized in the past few years, first by music apps like YouTube Music and Apple Music with their respective Recap features, then extending to social apps with Facebook and Snapchat’s Year In Review. Even Reddit is jumping in on the action. Spotify’s Wrapped remains far and away the most popular, though, and that doesn’t seem likely to change.

When the recap is available, users will see a notification at the top of their Instagram feed. Once you click on it, you’ll then be able to customize the stories included in the stickers before you share — or you can just view it privately without sharing. It’s up to you.

Instagram Playback is available to all Instagram users today through December 31, the company said via Mashable.

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