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(Pocket-lint) - When there was a potential TikTok ban on the horizon in the US, interest grew in TikTok alternatives. One of the early standouts was Triller, largely because it had been aggressively recruiting social media A-listers, but also because it's a straight-up TikTok clone.

Here's everything you need to know about Triller.


What is Triller?

Triller has been around since 2015 but only started to get attention in 2020.

It's a social video app you can use to watch or create short-form videos, which can be easily edited with in-app tools, including music, filters, drawings, and more. Once you post a "Triller" video, other users can share it, comment on it, or use the sound from it in their own videos. 

Triller has made different claims about its user numbers. In August 2020, a spokesperson told CNBC it had 65 million “active users” and 250 million downloads. Then, in October, it claimed  it had “more than 250 million users across the top Comscore Publishers" as well as “approximately 250 million downloads.” But, according to Business Insider, former Triller employees claimed those numbers are five times higher than internal figures.

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How does Triller work?

If you know how TikTok works, you will immediately know how Triller works. The functionality and even the UI of both apps are incredibly similar. You can follow other Triller users, comment and like on their videos, search and discover videos to watch, record and shoot videos yourself, and so on. You don't need an account to watch Trillers, just like you don't need an account to watch TikToks, but you do need one to post a Triller.


From the moment you open the app, you're treated to the Triller home page, or video feed, which is split into three tabs: Following, Trills, and For You. Following is a feed of videos from creators you follow. Trills feature videos with music from the Triller and Apple Music Libraries. They can be any length from 4 seconds to 60 seconds long. And For You is like TikTok's curated For You Page. It recommends popular videos to watch.

All the videos on Triller are vertical and in full screen, and you can swipe up or down on them to find more to watch. Easy!


In the navigation bar, you will see a magnifying glass symbol. This points to Search. Go here to search and find videos of any type. You will see a search bar at the top, followed by Triller TV recommendations, spotlighted videos, and top videos. It's pretty self-explanatory. Simply tap the video you want to see, and from there you can interact with it or swipe away to continue finding other great Trillers to watch.


In the navigation bar, you will see a + symbol. This points to Upload. Go here to record and share Trillers. You will be given the option to create a music video or an OG video. With music videos, you must start by selecting a song. You can trim the audio and then start filming. With OG videos, however, you instantly start recording. Both options let you add filters, do different takes, adjust the speed, zoom in, and use a timer.

Triller lets you preview your video before you post. You can also add a caption, category, location info, and even set it to private before posting.


In the navigation bar, you will see a music symbol. This points to Discover. Go here to search and find music. Once you find a track you like on the Discover page, you can select it, play it, use it in your own Triller, or go on to watch the top videos featuring that track. Simple! Triller has licensing partnerships with Warner Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and Universal Music Group, so there's plenty of music to be found.


In the navigation bar, you will see a person symbol. This points to Profile. On this page, you will see your public profile, including who you follow and who follows you. You can edit your profile, photo, name, username, and more from Profile. Also on your profile, you can see your Triller drafts, which are private and only visible to you. When go to others go to your profile, they will see only public videos as well as follower information.


Finally, to edit your settings, go to Profile in the navigation bar and hit the settings cog in the top corner of your Profile page. From this area, you can adjust your account settings, privacy settings, and set your preferred video preferences such as resolution. Simple!

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Who owns Triller?

Triller is based in LA and owned by Proxima Media, a firm launched by Hollywood film producer Ryan Kavanaugh, who together with his executive team is responsible for producing more than 200 films, such as Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and The Social Network. Triller in 2020 closed a $50 million round that valued the company at $300 million. TechCrunch reported it was seeking $250 million at a valuation of $1.25 billion.

Does anyone use Triller?

Former President Donald Trump notably joined Triller in protest of TikTok. And some of TikTok's biggest stars also flocked to the app in 2020. Josh Richards, Griffin Johnson, and Noah Beck, for instance, all joined, though they wore Triller merch in their videos, suggesting they partnered with the service to create content. Other celebrities - like Justin Bieber, Rita Ora, and Kevin Hart - are also on Triller but don't frequently post.

What information does Triller collect?

What information does Triller collect?

According to Triller’s privacy policy, the app collects the following data from its users: "Name, age, date of birth, gender, address, email address, social media login details, telephone number, photograph, and username/password". It can also connect with Facebook and Twitter, allowing the app to access the information its users have shared on those services. Triller also collects users' location information and device data.

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Want to know more?

Check out Triller's website for more details - it has a FAQ page here too. We also have this round-up of other TikTok and Triller alternatives here.

Writing by Maggie Tillman. Editing by Adrian Willings.