Facebook is going after YouTube with its new 'Watch' video streaming service

Isaac Cain
August 10, 2017

Basically, Zuckerberg wants to make sure we spend all our time on his omnipresent social network, so Watch is likely to evolve into a platform which competes with traditional TV networks as well as online services such as Netflix and YouTube. It does not want it to be a part of the video feed that is made up of videos that are shared by users' friends and related content that comes with it. Watch will not be in the videos tab that was added previous year to Facebook. Watch will be released to a limited number of users in the United States before its global rollout.

Also, users would be able to view comments and connect further with their friends for shows. It's yet another foray by the social media company from the business of distributing other people's content into producing and licensing its own, and differs from its existing video content in that it looks a lot like Netflix or YouTube's apps.

The video hub is called "Watch", and will appear as a tab in the mobile app and also be featured on the desktop web.

The shows on Watch will be episodes that could be live or recorded, some of which Facebook will pay for. "Facebook, like it or not, is the biggest opportunity in video", one publisher told Mashable.

ATTN said on Wednesday it had two original series coming to Facebook Watch: a health programme with actress Jessica Alba and a relationship advice show. On Facebook, videos are discovered through friends and bring communities together.

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Watch will have plenty of live sports and sports-related video on-demand as Facebook has spent months partnering with sports properties on streaming games and shows on Facebook Live.

"We'll be introducing Watch to a limited group of people in the USA and plan to bring the experience to more people soon". It has been in talks with publishers and networks to deliver new shows and a revamped video section to host the programming. Additionally, the company will open up the platform to a limited group of creators and will then roll it out to all soon after.

Facebook says that Watch will be divided into personalised sections that are user-defined, organised around themes that the user communities and friends are watching.

One of the new Facebook Watch programs is entitled, Bae or Bail, in which "Unsuspecting couples put their relationship and wits to the test as they're thrown into terrifying scenarios", according to the Hollywood Reporter.

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