TikTok is coming for Instagram as ByteDance prepares to launch new photo app, TikTok Notes

The Instagram and TikTok wars continue as Chinese tech giant ByteDance prepares to launch new photo app.

Instagram, owned by Meta, created its reels feature in 2020 to compete with TikTok's rise in popularity, and now, TikTok appears to be preparing to launch a photo and text app to compete with Instagram.

The news began leaking last month when some TikTok users took to Reddit to share screenshots of notifications they had been receiving on the upcoming launch.

"As part of our continued commitment to innovating the TikTok experience, we're exploring ways to empower our community to create and share their creativity with photos and text in a dedicated space for those formats," TikTok said in a statement.

The app, called TikTok Notes, will not be broadly available at this time, a TikTok spokesperson told USA TODAY Friday. The testing phase of the app isn't currently being rolled out in the U.S., they said.

Though TikTok users log more time on its app, Instagram is still seeing more downloads. TikTok still trails behind Instagram in accounts created, TikTok with 1.12 billion users and Instagram with 1.47 billion.

A peek at TikTok's new app

“TikTok Notes, a new app for photo posts, is coming soon! Your existing and future public TikTok photo posts will be shown on TikTok Notes. If you prefer not to show your public TikTok photo posts on TikTok Notes, turn this off now," a pop-up told some TikTok users, according to a screenshot shared on Reddit.

"It looks like TikTok is trying to use your content to start to populate the content in the app," a TikTok creator with the handle Marketing With Sam said in a video breaking down what we know of TikTok Notes. There is a toggle for those who wish to keep their photos off the new platform though, she said.

The website, notes.tiktok.com, is live, but doesn't open up in the App Store. You will get a glimpse into the app's aesthetic when you visit its landing page, however.

Will TikTok Notes land with users? Time will tell.

“The copycat phenomenon runs rampant across social media platforms”, Mike Proulx, VP, Research Director at Forrester, told the BBC, noting that these efforts sometimes “pay off." A good example of this was Instagram's creation of “Stories” to rival Snapchat, Proulx added.

"Consumers could have app fatigue," Sam concluded in her video. "But a lot of brands are saying their carousel posts are a lot higher engaging than their video photos," she said.

Only time will tell if users will engage with yet another new app.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: TikTok Notes release date still unknown. What we know about the app.