YouTube is set to launch a number of new features this year, including one that will compete with fast-growing social media platform TikTok.
YouTube chief product officer Neal Mohan said that the platform’s upcoming video format called “Shorts” will begin rolling out this year.
This feature has proven successful during its trials in India and will subsequently begin launching in other countries from March.
“Since the beginning of December, the number of Indian channels using Shorts creation tools has more than tripled, and the YouTube Shorts player is now receiving more than 3.5 billion daily views globally,” Mohan said.
“In the coming weeks, we’ll begin expanding the beta to the US, unlocking our tools to even more creators so they can get started with Shorts.”
YouTube also said it would continue to launch monetization products to help creators make money from their content.
The platform has also been testing a new applause feature which allows fans to show support for their favourite YouTube channels.
“This feature unlocks new monetization opportunities for creators’ uploads, and we’re looking forward to launching this more broadly to creators this year,” Mohan said.
Other changes that YouTube is planning to make this year include new features related to the YouTube interface and YouTube TV.
New interface and YouTube TV
Mohan said YouTube is constantly working on making its applications easier to navigate across all platforms.
“Last year, we launched video chapters to help viewers more easily navigate within a video,” he said.
“We’ll soon expand this feature to automatically add video chapters to relevant videos.”
The company said that YouTube TV has more than 3 million paid subscribers, 86 networks, and offers unlimited DVR.
This service will be expanded this year by the launch of an add-on option that lets viewers watch shows in 4K and enable offline viewing.
“Plus, this option will add unlimited concurrent streams at home, so the whole family can enjoy YouTube TV on different screens at once,” Mohan said.
Other planned improvements for YouTube apps include changes to YouTube Music, YouTube VR, and more.