Competition on short video services is seriously heating up. YouTube Shorts has been announced as a new competitor to TikTok, and TikTok has reportedly teamed up with Oracle to allow for continuing operations in the United States.
Early last month, US President Donald Trump made the announcement that TikTok, WeChat, and similar social media services involved with China would be facing a ban in the country if their operations were not sold to a US company. TikTok’s future was uncertain, as companies like Microsoft and even Walmart expressed their interest in making a purchase, but no firm deals had been set.
With President Trump’s deadline just a few days away, people weren’t quite sure if TikTok was going to survive. Now, the company’s future is threatened for an entirely different reason: YouTube Shorts has just been announced as a competing service from Google.
“User-generated short videos were born on YouTube starting with our first upload, a short 18-second video called ‘Me at the zoo,'” read a post on the YouTube Blog. “As technology advances, creators and artists can now take advantage of the incredible power of smartphones to easily create and publish high-quality content wherever they are in the world. And people can be entertained and informed by bite-sized content in the spare minutes of the day.”
“That’s why we’re excited to announce that we are building YouTube Shorts, a new short-form video experience right on YouTube for creators and artists who want to shoot short, catchy videos using nothing but their mobile phones.”
YouTube Shorts uses a very simple process to allow people to create videos. A “multi-segment camera” makes it easy to string a bunch of clips together in succession and speed controls will allow you to mix things up even further. An option to add music will be available right from the get-go, and all of this can be done hands-free thanks to timer and countdown options.
A beta version of YouTube Shorts is deploying in India, a country that banned TikTok in early August 2020. As time goes on, more features will be added to YouTube’s new short clips service and more countries will be brought on board to the beta.
This new short clips service from Google will likely have free reign in India, but it will be a different story in the United States. Sources speaking to CNN have said that TikTok and Oracle have reached a deal, a move that would allow TikTok to continue operations in the United States when President Trump’s deadline arrives.
YouTube Shorts isn’t likely to be the only competition, either. Other video services surely have their own versions of TikTok in development in anticipation of the ban going through. YouTube Shorts might be able to capture some of the market when it debuts in the west, but it could soon see itself facing even more competition than it had first expected.