In 2018, Instagram launched an exciting new feature called Instagram Music. The feature gives users the ability to add music to photos and videos in their Instagram stories. Instagram clearly understands that some things are best said with music, so after years of waiting, the company has made Instagram Music available in the Middle East.
The delay was primarily due to music licensing deals. Instagram is legally required to purchase a license for all the music in order for users to use them within Instagram stories. These music licensing deals are geo-restricted, so Instagram can’t offer the feature to countries they have not obtained a license for.
When the feature was first introduced, it was only available in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, New Zealand, Sweden, Canada, Australia, and France. So users who were not from these specific countries typically got the famous “Instagram Music isn’t available in your region” message when they scrolled through Instagram stories of people who had this feature.
“For that reason, we’ve been working with creators and music partners around the world to help people connect and share how they feel through music across the Facebook family of apps. We see music as a core part of the future of entertainment on Facebook and Instagram. Now there are even more ways for people to create and discover content they’ll love.” said Facebook in a written statement.
To enjoy this feature, simply open your Instagram app, swipe right, and create a new story. After that, tap on the sticker icon or swipe up. Once this is done, you’ll find an icon that is titled “Music”. You should then be able to choose any of the available songs to add to your story. You can select a part or segment of a song to use in your story. When displaying song lyrics, you’ll have the freedom to change the style, font, color, and size of the text appearing on screen.
Stripe Enters The Middle East With Its UAE Launch
Stripe will initially only be available to UAE businesses, allowing them to accept online payments, make payouts, mitigate fraud, and attract customers from around the world.
Stripe, a provider of online payment processing for internet business, has finally expanded to the Middle East with its official launch in the United Arab Emirates. The Irish-American company also opened an office in Dubai Internet City, allowing it to be closer to its new customer base.
At first, Stripe will only be available to UAE businesses, allowing them to accept online payments, make payouts, mitigate fraud, and attract customers from around the world.
“The UAE is a thriving hub for technology, supported by strong investor appetite, internet-savvy consumers, and an open, innovative ecosystem of business leaders and entrepreneurs,” said Matt Henderson, EMEA Business Lead at Stripe. “Our launch today also means we can now connect our global user base to the Gulf, enabling them to seamlessly expand their operations in the region.”
Stripe’s entry into the Middle East market comes just weeks after its latest round of funding, which has resulted in the company’s value jumping up to $95 billion and making it one of the most valuable fintech companies in the world.
The UAE is the perfect entry point for the online payment processing provider because the total value of digital payment transactions in the gulf country has doubled in the last two years alone, reaching $18.5 billion in 2020. If the UAE remains on the current growth trajectory, its e-commerce sector is expected to add nearly another $10 billion over the next two years.
Another factor that makes the UAE such an ideal expansion point is the fact that accepting online payments in the country has historically been incredibly challenging. Stripe provides a straightforward setup process and developer-friendly APIs, making it easy for companies of all sizes to improve their online presence.
Last year, Stripe launched in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Malta. The company also expanded into Africa via Nigeria technology startup Paystack. In total, Stripe currently processes hundreds of billions of dollars each year.