Google’s TikTok competitor, YouTube Shorts, has entered beta in more than a hundred countries around the world following a limited release in India and the US a few months ago.
- YouTube Shorts, Google’s take on TikTok, expands availability to more countries
- The staggered rollout will take a few days to complete
- It was previously limited to two-dozen markets, like the US and UK
- Google has said that YouTube Shorts remains in beta
YouTube Shorts enters beta in 100+ countries
To be clear, YouTube Shorts is still in beta.
But as of today, the service is now available “across more than 100 countries around the world where YouTube is available,” Neal Mohan, YouTube’s Chief Product Officer, said on Twitter.
You may have already seen short-form videos a la TikTok within a new Shorts section within the mobile YouTube app. Anyone could view a short right from the onset, but only testers in around 26 countries, including the US and UK, were able to use creator tools to edit these things.
Short-form videos on YouTube
Announced in April 2020 as Google’s take on the rising popularity of TikTok, YouTube Shorts is a feature of the mobile YouTube app for uploading short videos, sharing them quickly and viewing other people’s shorts. The service leverages YouTube’s catalog of licensed music, with songs available to creators to use as soundtracks for their shorts. That alone could give YouTube a leg up on other services that have tried to compete with TikTok in the past.
Meanwhile, TikTok, which has seen its popularity booming in the past year or so, is not resting on its laurels. ByteDance, the Chinese company behind TikTok, is continually rolling out new features to the platform. Recently, TikTok lifted its one-minute ceiling on video length so everyone can now upload videos to TikTok up to three minutes in length.
Facebook has also been feeling the heat as young people are embracing TikTok as if it were a new Instagram. Instagram’s head Adam Mosseri announced a series of sweeping changes in response to TikTok’s popularity, proclaiming that “We’re no longer a photo-sharing app”.
Instead, he said, Instagram will become a full-screen, video-first entertainment app.