To compete with the ever growing popularity of the online video applications, such as YouTube, Amazon and Netflix, the social media giant, Facebook has redesigned its video platform and named it Watch. This revamped video platform starts rolling out to a small number of U.S users from Thursday and the Watch tab will start replacing the current video platform featured in the application for the web, television, Android, and iOS operating system.
So what was the necessity of the Watch video platform and how it will benefit Facebook? The Watch tab will feature original video content developed exclusively for Facebook by partners, and the revenue generated from the ads will be divided in a 55:45 ratio. The makers of the video will get 55% of the money where as Facebook will keep 45%. And if the Watch tab becomes successful, it will allow the users to personalize the platform as per their interests over time. Talking about the necessities, Facebook hit a stagnant point to generate the ad money, as the social media tycoon started running out of space to put new ads in the News Feed. So, the Watch video platform could possibly become a new source of income for the US-based tech conglomerate.
If we dissect the Watch tab, it will come with different categories, such as “most talked about,” “what friends are watching,” “what’s making people laugh.” and “videos longer than 10 minutes.” Moreover, the video platform is divided into two major sections, “discover”-which will suggest videos for the users to watch now and the “watchlist”- which will save videos for the users to watch later. And if the users like a particular video, they can keep a tab of the show and can watch the new episodes when released.
At the launch event, Daniel Danker, the lead product manager of the videos said that the Watch tab will help in making new friends and will endorse communal viewing in the process, which is the motto of the company and also the other contemporary video streaming services have failed to do. “What makes watching Facebook videos special is your friends. You discover videos through your friends. You often find yourself discussing videos with friends. Video has this amazing power to bring people together and build community.”
Currently, “dozens” of shows are available in the Watch tab including Tastemade’s Kitchen Little, Major League Baseball, Mike Rowe, Nas Daily, Gabby Bernstein, A&E’s “Bae or Bail”, All Def Digital’s “Inside the Office”, Billboard’s “How it Went Down”, David Lopez’s “My Social Media Life”, Golden State Warriors’ “Championship Rewind”, National Geographic’s “We’re Wired that Way”, National Geographic’s “Safari Live”, NASA’s “Science @ NASA” and many more. But soon the number will reach the three figure marks, wished Danker.
So with a more than 2 billion user-base, will the Watch tab get massive success or the current online video services like Amazon, Hulu or HBO will continue their domination? That is the question to which we all are looking forward eagerly.