Owners of Android TVs or Google TVs will now be able to view short-form videos via the YouTube app.
YouTube Chief Product Officer Neal Mohan said in the blog:
“While this may seem like a natural next step, an incredible amount of thought and care has gone into bringing this vertical, mobile-first experience to the big screen.”
Before this release, there was no convenient way for viewers to watch vertical videos in landscape orientation. Now, you can play vertical clips in a clean, white-bordered format that uses the wider screen’s additional space to include information about the video, including title, audio format, creator names, and the like/dislike icons.
New Functionality Intended To Facilitate Community Viewing
YouTube researched users’ preferred format before releasing this new functionality, seeking to preserve what it called the “essence of Shorts” while encouraging viewing with others on a larger screen.
“As YouTube continues to make it easier to interact on TV, the richness of the Shorts experience will only grow. Bringing Shorts to TV is a great bridge to bring two of our most important experiences together to benefit both creators and viewers. Over the coming weeks, this experience will be rolling out on TV models (2019 and later) and on newer game consoles.”
The Google-owned video-sharing platform experimented with employing a conventional video player and a “jukebox” style format, in which multiple Shorts would display simultaneously, before finally settling on a layout with a clean design that still takes advantage of the television’s additional screen space.
Move Latest Attempt By YouTube To Compete With TikTok
Recognizing the power TikTok wields in the short-form video sphere, many other companies, including Google and Facebook, have sought to claim a share of the market to varying degrees of success.
YouTube Shorts has been one of the more successful platforms in this format, reaching 30 million daily views in April of this year, a massive number for a service that was launched as a beta version in India in September 2020 before going live in the U.S. in March of the following year.
The release of Shorts for televisions should provide YouTube with a significant advantage over competitors, as most smart TVs come with the YouTube app already installed, as opposed to downloading a separate app, ala TikTok.
Viewing Shorts only requires users to open the app and look for a carousel on the homepage. You can also view Shorts directly from a creator’s channel.
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