Facebook begins testing TikTok-style short videos on its main app in India
By Vivek Raj | Galatta | Aug 15, 2020, 06:39 pm
Facebook has begun testing its new short video format after Lasso, which was described to be a TikTok clone, with Reels now on Instagram gaining quite a lot of popularity ever since its launch. Facebook, however, is now testing short-form videos on its main app in India, in a dedicated 'Short Videos' section, within the news feed with the 'Create' button on top of it. Users will be able to browse videos by swiping up when they click on the 'Create' button, which launches the Facebook Camera.
— Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) August 13, 2020
With short-form videos gaining widespread popularity around the world, Facebook has stated that they are currently identifying new ways to offer this experience to their users on the social network's main platform. This latest feature by Facebook comes at a time after TikTok was banned in late June. Reels on Instagram went on to be launched in India last month, with the daily engagement of Facebook's services in the country seeing a drastic rise upwards by more than 25% ever since TikTok was banned.
It is to be noted that short-form videos by several local startups have also been introduced since the TikTok ban in India among which includes the Twitter-backed ShareChat and Times Internet’s Gaana and MX Player streaming services. These have been launched over the last few weeks as standalone apps or comprise of integrated features in order to replicate and capitalize on the social experience that was provided by TikTok to users. A section for short videos has also been launched by YouTube, with the feature at present still being tested and more users having gained access to it in India recently.
TikTok's largest user base was India prior to the Indian government banning the app along with 59 other Chinese apps over the border dispute with the neighboring superpower nation. Since the ban, ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, has been trying to figure out a way to re-enter the Indian market and are as per latest reports holding discussions with Reliance Industries to sell a stake in the app's local business. With TikTok actively absent in the India market, a majority of the app's users have shifted to other platforms, which are trying to encash on the void left by the short-video app giant.