What are auto-captions for Instagram Stories and why do we need them?

·1-min read
Instagram is reportedly testing auto-captions for Stories.

Among other functions in the pipeline, Instagram is reportedly testing an option for creating automatic captions for Stories. The test was reported online by the well-known British social media consultant, Matt Navarra, although the function's roll-out has not been officially confirmed.

In this demonstration, it appears that the words spoken by the person making Stories are instantly transcribed onscreen. And it seems easy to put in place, by means of a new "captions" sticker to automatically generate the captions. It also appears to be possible to choose the text font.

This technology would evidently benefit users with impaired hearing, but they aren't the only ones who could find the function useful. In fact, anyone who often finds themselves in noisy environments, or in places that aren't necessarily compatible with watching Stories -- such as on packed public transport -- could make good use of this feature. Plus, captions make it easier to watch Stories discreetly, without switching on the sound.

For the moment, only a small group of testers (and only in English) can access the function and there has been no official news on a forthcoming roll-out.

If and when the option does arrive, Instagram's move would be part of a wider trend, as more and more platforms now support automatic captions, like those already proposed on Facebook or YouTube. Twitter and even Zoom could soon follow suit.

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David Bénard