Instagram follows TikTok's lead and brings auto-captioning to stories

Using a sticker, Instagram will auto-transcribe your video and provide captions, so you can watch on mute

Instagram auto captions
(Image credit: Instagram)

Instagram has joined a list of other services to offer an auto-captioning service for its videos. As many of us like to scroll through our feeds without the sound, this is a handy feature that allows you to get more out of your video. It also saves creators from a lot of editing.

TikTok launched its own auto-captioning service last month, and so in an attempt to keep up with the cool kids, the Facebook-owned Instagram is swiftly following suit. While TikTok’s feature will be available in English and Japanese on all uploaded videos, Instagram is currently limiting it to just its stories, and just in English so far.

The captions are available in the sticker menu and can be placed on the screen, formatted and sized to your liking – much like the other sticker options. The function is live now, so you can try it out. The speech recognition is pretty impressive and with a choice of font types and styles, you can easily adapt it to suit or video.  

Tech Crunch, who reported the update, adds that Instagram is also planning to roll out the functionality to its Reels and provide a wider launch to cover more countries and languages soon.

Importantly, the auto-captioning functionality in Instagram – and on other sites – increases the accessibility of the platform, for those hard of hearing. But if in the process it also stops people watching videos with the sound blaring, I’m all for it.

Mat Gallagher
Mat Gallagher

As T3's Managing Editor in the US, Mat is a true lover of gadgets, but especially anything that involves cameras, cars, music or travel. Originally from the UK, he has written about technology since 2003 and is now based in Chicago.