Facebook Reels, Instagram Reels, Youtube Shorts - these are some popular alternatives to viral Tiktok videos. The young crowd on Instagram, Youtube, and Tiktok love watching and sharing viral reels. Facebook introduced the Reels feature on its platform since September 2021 in the US and February 2022 Worldwide. It has met with a mixed response from social media users. Some users love it and spend their free time scrolling through funny and entertaining reels. However, there are also many who wish to avoid Facebook Reels. But Facebook has been promoting Reels on its main platform to drive adoption and popularity of this feature. So people who don't like Reels are looking for solutions to remove, hide or disable them from their Facebook experience.
In this article, we will show you the different tricks and solutions for removing Facebook Reels from your FB app. While there is no official setting to disable Reels, there are many working fixes that can help you to avoid seeing Reels while using Facebook.
- How to Hide/Remove/Disable the Facebook Reels Feature?
- Hide Facebook Reels: Other Related Questions
How to Hide/Remove/Disable the Facebook Reels Feature?
- Facebook Reels are shown prominently in Facebook mobile apps. But they are still not present on the FB Mobile Site.
- So open any browser on your iPhone, iPad or Android device. Go to https://m.facebook.com/ which is the mobile version of Facebook website.
- As you login to your Facebook account on the Facebook Mobile Site, you will see that there is no Reels tab on the Facebook Feed.
- To easily use the Facebook Mobile Site like an App, tap on the three dots to the top right of browser.
- Tap on "Add to Home screen".
- In the next dialog menu titled "Add to Home screen", tap on "Add".
- Now you can easily use Facebook Mobile Site from your Phone Homescreen using this Icon.
- In this way, you can enjoy using Facebook on your smartphones or tablets with Facebook Mobile Site, and also avoid seeing the Reels feature.
What if we can go back in time when there were no Reels on Facebook? Well, if you use an Android device, you can find an older Official APK file of Facebook app and install this past version of Facebook. There will be no Reels visible in this older version of the Facebook app. Just make sure that your auto-updates in Google Play are disabled, so that your Facebook app will remain in its older version that has no Reels.
This solution is not possible on iPhone and iPad because Apple only allows installation of latest versions of apps.
Step by Step Instructions to Install older APK file of Facebook
- First of all, uninstall the Facebook app version that you have on your Android phone. This is necessary to properly install the older version of Facebook. From your phone app drawer, long press on the Facebook icon, tap Uninstall.
- Secondly, you need to disable auto-updates from Google Play store. This will ensure that the older version Facebook app that we will install in the next steps will not get updated automatically. Go to Google Play store > go the Facebook app page > Tap on the three dots on top right > Disable Auto-Update (make sure the box is unchecked)
- We will use the website Android APKs Free where all the old versions of Facebook app are archived. These are stored as APK files.
- We know that Reels were launched in September 2021. But Facebook quietly rolls out its new features to select users. As a result Reels can be present in some Facebook app versions even before September 2021. So we must look for any version of Facebook APK that is a few months earlier.
- From our testing, we found out that Reels were present in the August 2021 version 3188.8.131.52.111. So we tried the May 2021 version 3184.108.40.206.118 in which Reels are absent. So if you install this or earlier versions of Facebook, that will do the trick. Go to this page and click on the "Download APK" button.
- You will get the "File might be harmful" dialog menu preventing you from downloading the APK file. This is because you are not downloading from the official Google Play Store. But to install an older version of Facebook app, we need to download and use this APK file. So we tap on "Download anyway" and wait for the APK file to download.
Then tap on the downloaded APK file. If you have never installed an app using its APK file, you will get a warning message. This is meant to prevent you from installing harmful, modified APK files. To install this older version of the official Facebook app, you need to change a setting. So tap on SETTINGS. Enable the "Allow from this source" option. Enable the "Allow from this source" option.
- Again tap on the downloaded APK file and this time it will show you the Install dialog menu. Tap on Install. Let the app finish installing.
- Open this older version of the Facebook app and login to your account. You will find that you can use Facebook normally and there is no Reels feature visible anywhere. Well done!
There are many third-party social media clients or third-party apps, that you can use to browse Facebook and other social media sites. You can use them as an alternative to the official Facebook app, and avoid the Reels feature. Just go to the Apple app store or Google play store, and search for "Facebook Third-Party Apps".
Why are many popular Third-Party Facebook Clients not working well anymore?
Note that Facebook has been making changes to its codebase and preventing third-party apps from serving Facebook in their clients. This is to enforce the use of the official Facebook app. As a result, many third-party apps are becoming useless and crashing Facebook while browsing.
Hence, before you install a third-party app alternative to Facebook, make sure to look through the latest user reviews on the third-party social media app pages. If you see good ratings and reviews, then that app is likely to be functioning well even now.
For example, in our research, we found many popular third-party apps having frustrated user reviews after the recent Facebook updates. But we found two apps with good reviews and ratings, called Folio and Faster for Facebook. You can try installing them and use Facebook without Reels.
Hide Facebook Reels: Other Related Questions
Facebook and Instagram have the same parent company Meta. So there is a feature that allows users to connect their Instagram and Facebook accounts, and then cross-post content on both platforms. For example, you can make an Instagram Post, Reel or Story, and sync it automatically to your Facebook account. Or vice versa, post a Story, Post, or Reel on Facebook, and let it to automatically share on Instagram.
- Open Instagram app > Go to your profile > Tap on hamburger menu > Settings
- In the Settings, look for Meta Accounts Center.
- Tap on Sharing across profiles.
- Under the Automatically share section > Your Instagram reels > Disable it
- Open Facebook app > Tap on Hamburger Menu > Settings and Privacy > Settings
- Scroll down to Preferences > Media
- In the Media settings page > Enable "Never Autoplay Videos"
When you are watching Facebook Reels, you can choose to avoid getting Reels from a particular account. Simply tap on the three dots on the bottom right > Hide Reel > You will see fewer Reels from that account.
- Open Facebook app > Tap on Hamburger Menu > Settings and Privacy > Settings
- Scroll down to Audience and visibility > Reels
- Choose the correct settings as per your wish for the privacy of your Reels on Facebook. You can set it to Public or Friends. There is also a "Friends except..." option to hide your reels for specific people. If you keep your Reels public, you can decide if others can share your reels to their Facebook story or not.
If you don't want to see the Reels feature on Facebook, the best solution is to use the Facebook mobile site. This will work on all iOS and Android devices, and you will be able to use Facebook without seeing any Reels. Another possible fix if you use an Android device is to install an older version of Facebook app. You can download an archived official APK file of May 2021 version of Facebook to hide the reels feature. The last fix is to use a third-party Facebook client, but you need to look at the user reviews first to verify if Facebook is functioning well in that app.
We have also seen some questions related to hiding of reels on Facebook. You can change the privacy settings of your Facebook Reels, enable/disable sharing of Reels between your FB and Insta accounts, stop autoplay of videos and reels on Facebook, and see fewer Reels from a given account.
Do let us know in the comments section about your experiences with the Reels feature on Facebook and Instagram!