Instagram is tired of making your videos in reels and then moving on to Tiktok. When using the reels this week, ledge Found out that when trying to download an edited clip to an iPhone, the audio from the clip disappeared. This means that if you want to export footage from a reel to use in another app, you’ll need to actually post the reel first to save the sound. As recently as late July, it was possible to download the clip with the audio and use it in a separate app — like, say, TikTok — without posting it first.
Audio was removed on the three iPhones we tested, though exporting with audio was still possible with Instagram on Android. Instagram did not respond to multiple requests for comment on whether this was a glitch or a deliberate change.
Speaking of experience, TikTok’s in-app tools aren’t particularly useful for more advanced editing. TikTok doesn’t allow you to use certain filters when starting over with footage filmed outside the app, and it doesn’t allow you to download clips that aren’t finished or watermarked. (YouTube Shorts just added the watermark requirement, too.)
To overcome this, TikTok users can turn to Instagram, which has similar features to the reels. For example, you can use Instagram’s green screen effect — which is more flexible for editing than TikTok’s version — and then download that clip and send it to TikTok. This trick is used by creators as a way to bypass TikTok’s terrible editing tools and use video features or filters that are only on Instagram. Or, at least it used to be.
While all these steps make filming a bit more time-consuming for creators, relying on downloaded Instagram clips was one of the easiest ways to create more dynamic TikTok videos using filters. Without the ability to download clips with sound, users now have two options: to use only certain features or rely entirely on TikTok’s poor editing software to upload to Instagram reels.
The change comes on the heels of Instagram temporarily on the back of TikTok-esque algorithmic changes. But it’s still a sign that Instagram is determined to steal the throne of the shortform video platform.