Instagram, favorite of artists, debuts music channel

Updated versions of Instagram applications released in the United States for mobile devices powered by Apple or Android software boast Explore pages complete with trending topics and places (AFP Photo/Josh Edelson) (AFP/File)

New York (AFP) - Instagram, which has quickly become a favorite social media platform for stars, on Wednesday launched a channel dedicated to music.

The account @Music -- a first-of-a-kind dedicated content channel run by Instagram -- will each week highlight an up-and-coming artist or offer a behind-the-scenes look at a more established musician.

The new account will be "dedicated to exploring music around the globe, from those who create it to the community around it," Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom wrote in a blog post.

Instagram, with its focus on visuals, has witnessed soaring growth since its launch in 2010 thanks in part to the worldwide fad of selfie pictures, the rising quality of smartphone cameras and regular user-engaging themes such as "#ThrowbackThursday."

Musicians have embraced Instagram as a way to communicate with fans, offering everything from professional photos to snapshots of their day-to-day lives.

Facebook, which has more than one billion users but has seen its growth mature, in 2012 bought Instagram for an estimated $1 billion.

Fellow social media giant Twitter has meanwhile struggled to find a strategy for music that brings in revenue.

Sunil Singhvi from Twitter's British division said this week that he would come to the US headquarters to take charge of the company's music section.