Short-Form Video App Storiaverse Touts ‘Read-Write’ Format

Mobile entertainment platform Storiaverse is connecting writers and animators around the world to create content for what it claims is a unique “read-watch” format. Available on iOS and Android, Storiaverse combines animated video, audio and text into a narrative that “enhances the reading experience for digital native adults.” Created by Agnes Kozera and David Kierzkowski, co-founders of the Podcorn podcast sponsorship marketplace, Storiaverse caters to graphic novel fans interested in discovering original, short-form animated stories that range from 5-10 minutes in length. At launch there will be 25 original titles. Continue reading Short-Form Video App Storiaverse Touts ‘Read-Write’ Format

Facebook Updates Video Player to Take On TikTok, YouTube

Meta Platforms has updated its Facebook video player to offer a consistent vertical view for Reels, Facebook Live and long-form content, making vertical the default view. The upgraded player adds controls including fullscreen mode for horizontal videos, a slider to parse through longer videos, and “tap” functionality to bring up additional options, like “pause,” or jumping back or forward in 10-second increments. The new video player will roll out first on iOS and Android in the U.S. and Canada, then globally in the coming months. Continue reading Facebook Updates Video Player to Take On TikTok, YouTube

YouTube Creators Can Now Share Exclusive Shorts with Fans

Google’s YouTube has created a new model for its Shorts feed that lets creators share short-form videos as exclusive content for their paying viewers. The feature gives creators an opportunity to share exclusive content with their most ardent fans, in addition to other perks for paying subscribers, like badges, custom emojis, live streams and more. TikTok recently loosened its subscription requirements for creators, allowing more of them to participate. In March, the ByteDance owned service said it is renaming TikTok Live as “Subscription” and is opening it to “regular creators,” letting them post exclusive content that paying users can see. Continue reading YouTube Creators Can Now Share Exclusive Shorts with Fans

LinkedIn Tests Vertical Video Feed, Experiments with Games

Microsoft-owned business and employment-focused social platform LinkedIn plans to add games and a vertical-scroll feed of short videos. But the career-centric platform will still be all work, even as it adds play. The intent is to have the TikTok-like video feed filled with professionally themed content, and the games will be geared toward relationship building, while also potentially getting people to spend more time using LinkedIn. The video feed is in the test phase, while code hinting at the direction of the gaming feature has been discovered by some astute app watchers. Continue reading LinkedIn Tests Vertical Video Feed, Experiments with Games

TikTok Updates Its Code to Sync to Separate ‘TikTok Photos’

Having fended off challenges in the short-form video sphere since its late 2016 launch, it now appears TikTok is playing offense, laying the groundwork for a photo-sharing app that has drawn comparisons to Instagram and Pinterest. Avid TikTok users are probably familiar with a feature that lets them post still images as moving images that can be examined by advancing frame-by-frame. Now TikTok seems to want to improve that approach by building a separate TikTok Photos app to which users of the primary platform can export and showcase their still images to Android and iOS. Continue reading TikTok Updates Its Code to Sync to Separate ‘TikTok Photos’

Meta Building Giant AI Model to Power Entire Video Ecosystem

Facebook chief Tom Alison says parent company Meta Platforms is building a giant AI model that will eventually “power our entire video ecosystem.” Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference this week, Alison said the model will drive the company’s video recommendation engine across all platforms that host long-form video as well as the short-form Reels, which are limited to 90 seconds. Alison said the company began experimenting with the new, super-sized AI model last year and found that it helped improve Facebook’s Reels watch time by anywhere from 8-10 percent. Continue reading Meta Building Giant AI Model to Power Entire Video Ecosystem

TikTok Tests Feature Designed to Streamline In-App Shopping

In its continuing effort to expand in-app shopping activity, TikTok is testing an option to allow users to automatically identify products in their uploads — a march toward making all objects shoppable. The test lets select users toggle to “Identify Similar Objects” within a video. When activated, the AI-powered ISO highlights matching products that can be purchased in-app. TikTok has been exploring the feature for deployment in the United States this past year. TikTok parent ByteDance has for some time been using the in-stream shopping feature in the platform’s Chinese sister platform, Douyin. Continue reading TikTok Tests Feature Designed to Streamline In-App Shopping

Discovery, ‘Unhinged’ Storytelling Top TikTok Trends of 2023

TikTok’s “What’s Next Report 2024,” its fourth annual trends forecast, aims to “arm marketers” with knowledge of the social platform community’s favorites “to shape the year ahead.” Curiosity was the No. 1 “trend force,” with users attesting TikTok “introduces them to new topics.” Unconventional storytelling (which TikTok calls “Storytelling Unhinged”) was the No. 2 trend, with creators employing unusual brand engagement techniques to keep viewers watching “past the first few seconds.” A makeup video viewed half a billion times, animal clips, ASMR with fried chicken and Selena Gomez touting her skincare routine were among TikTok videos most-viewed by U.S. audiences. Continue reading Discovery, ‘Unhinged’ Storytelling Top TikTok Trends of 2023

TikTok Adds ‘Artist Accounts’ to Help Boost Music Streaming

TikTok is further entrenching itself in music streaming with its new “Artist Account” toolbox that allows followers to play tunes, buy merchandise and access news and information. The new feature is designed to allow artists to promote their work and increase discoverability using such tools as an artist tag and new release highlights on discovery pages. TikTok describes the Artist Account as a “toolbox of features” to support promotion and “forge a closer relationship between artist and fan on TikTok.” Available to every music creator that has uploaded at least four songs, more than 70,000 accounts are eligible from the drop. Continue reading TikTok Adds ‘Artist Accounts’ to Help Boost Music Streaming

TikTok on the Rise as News Source, Facebook and X Decline

More U.S. adults say they regularly get news from TikTok, according to a Pew Research study that says this bucks the general trend of news consumption declining or remaining flat at other social media sites over the past few years. Since 2020, regular TikTok news consumption among American adults has more than quadrupled to 14 percent, from 3 percent, Pew finds. Among younger adults, news consumption is even higher, with 32 percent of those ages 18 to 29 claiming to regularly get news on TikTok. This compares with 15 percent of those 30 to 49. Continue reading TikTok on the Rise as News Source, Facebook and X Decline

TikTok Shop Rolls Out to U.S. Users Following Year of Testing

TikTok had a high-profile at New York Fashion Week, courting the marketing departments of companies including Gucci, Madewell and H&M at a splashy event at the East Village restaurant Cathédrale, decorated with mannequins bedecked in TikTok-inspired togs and a video wall featuring the “little luxuries” touted by TikTok users. While TikTok has succeeded in making itself a mandatory advertising outlet for many brands, the Fashion Week outreach was part of the platform’s effort to transition to a sales platform in its own right as after a year of testing it finally rolls out TikTok Shop for all U.S. users. Continue reading TikTok Shop Rolls Out to U.S. Users Following Year of Testing

YouTube Unravels Shorts, Demystifying Discovery Algorithm

YouTube has shared a video designed to demystify the algorithm that determines which Shorts get recommended, driving discovery and potential virality. Unlike TikTok and Instagram, YouTube didn’t reveal its top secrets by sharing specific details. In the Q&A presentation, Shorts Product Lead Todd Sherman answered frequently asked questions and emphasized the differences in how viewers consume content on Shorts versus YouTube. While the former involves swiping through hundreds of clips, flagship users are exposed to 10 or 20 videos and must proactively click or tap to play. Continue reading YouTube Unravels Shorts, Demystifying Discovery Algorithm

YouTube Music Adds a Vertical Video Scroll Called ‘Samples’

YouTube Music is adding Samples, a discovery feature that lets users scroll by swiping vertically, similar to TikTok’s signature video feed. Described as “the appetizer to a whole meal,” Samples is comprised of 30-second teasers, but quickly lets users add the entire song to a playlist or share it with friends, all “without leaving YouTube Music,” the Google-owned company informs, suggesting fans “kick off a great new radio station, watch the full video, visit the album page, or even use the song to create your own Short.” Rolling out globally in stages, the Samples tab will appear at the bottom of the YouTube Music app next to the Home, Library and Explore sections. Continue reading YouTube Music Adds a Vertical Video Scroll Called ‘Samples’

YouTube Shorts Adds Creator Tools Including Collab and Q&A

More than 2 billion logged-in users around the world are watching YouTube Shorts each month. To help creators keep them engaged, YouTube is releasing six new tools to improve creativity. Assists for remixing, adding stickers and effects, going live and more are coming to the platform, which has also begun testing a mobile-first live experience designed to help live creators get noticed in the main Shorts feed. One unusual new feature, Collab, lets creators display a Short in a side-by-side frame with other YouTube or Shorts videos. Collab lets users select from a variety of split-screen layout options. It will debut on iOS with Android to follow.  Continue reading YouTube Shorts Adds Creator Tools Including Collab and Q&A

Facebook Updates Video Features and Renames Watch Tab

Facebook has updated its video features in a bid to be more competitive with popular social video platforms TikTok and YouTube. Improvements from editing to discovery and the ability to upload videos in HDR roll out this week along with some new branding: the “Watch” tab has been renamed “Video,” unifying the streaming experience in one location. Editing tools for Reels are porting over to the main Feed channel, which means users can post and view short- and long-form video content as well as live videos in one place. The company is also making it easier to engage with recommended Instagram Reels directly on Facebook. Continue reading Facebook Updates Video Features and Renames Watch Tab