In an effort to compete with creator subscription services like Patreon, Instagram started an alpha test for the subscriber section in January. Today, the CEO of Instagram Adam Mosseri announced the expansion of the testing phase, and some updates on how the last six months of development.
When the test began in January, only 10 producers participated in the category, such as Olympic swimmer Jordan Chiles and astronomer Aliza Kelly. The first alpha release supported subscriber-only content, subscriber profiles and subscriber-only live streams. Now, according to Mosseri, tens of thousands of creators have joined, and the platform’s subscriber-only features are growing. The latest updates to Instagram subscriptions include subscriber group chats, subscribers-only channels and posts, and a subscriber-only tab on the creator’s profile, so paying followers can see content they have opened access.
Instagram told TechCrunch that subscriber chats can include up to 30 people, and chats will only be available for 24 hours, giving creators more control over how and when work with their communities.
“The most important thing for producers everywhere is a stable income,” Mosseri said in a video. “At the end of the day, if you’re a creator, you’re a business, and the best way to ensure some sustainable and predictable revenue is through subscriptions.”
Currently, Meta does not take any revenue from creators on its platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. This policy will remain in place until 2024 – originally, it was supposed to end in 2023, but CEO Mark Zuckerberg said last month that this appointment will be extended for another year. This is a serious attempt to trick developers into making money off of Meta’s products in the long run, but for now, it’s very good for developers. Zuckerberg doesn’t yet know how much of a cut Meta will take at the end of this introductory period, but he said last year “Apple and others will take less than 30%.”
In the metaverse, however, the company takes a 47.5% cut from digital asset sales – 30% through the Meta Quest store, and 17.5% through the Horizon Worlds platform.
Outside of our VR headsets, though, Meta is releasing a number of features for developers, which may not be as taxing. Yesterday, Instagram launched a creator market, currently in an application-only space, that allows brands and creators to connect for work and relationships. Many startups are trying to manage these relationships, although those platforms have been around for a long time, Instagram may benefit because of its own product from the site.