Facebook has started testing a short video feature within its main app in India. Currently, the feature named Short Videos can be seen in the news feed which allows users to watch and create short lip-syncing videos on the platform.
Confirming the development to TechCrunch, a Facebook spokesperson said that the company is looking at new ways to provide this experience for people to connect, create and share on the social media platform.
It’s worth noting that Facebook had already shut down its TikTok-like platform Lasso and launched a similar feature called Reels via Instagram in India. It seems that the social media giant has upped its ante to take on the Bytedance-owned company following the ban on Chinese-origin apps by the Indian government.
Facebook will join the likes of InMobi-owned Roposo, ShareChat’s Moj, Gaana’s HotShots, DailyHunt’s Josh, MX TakaTak, Mitron, Trell, Chingari and its Reels on Instagram, which have already captured much of the market after the ban on Chinese-origin apps left a sizeable gap.
Among the global players, YouTube is also planning to roll out its short video app called ‘Shorts’ for the Indian audience. Meanwhile, there has been back to back developments on taking over TikTok’s business in India.
It was reported that Microsoft was in talks with Bytedance to acquire TikTok in the US, Australia, New Zealand and India. Indian telecom giant Jio is also reportedly engaged with the company to invest in its local business. In both scenarios, the comeback of TikTok will affect the ongoing race of becoming an alternative to the app which has over two billion downloads across the globe.
As per recent data, homegrown alternatives of TikTok such as Roposo has 70 million-plus downloads and Moj recently crossed 50 million downloads. TakaTak and Mitron have been downloaded over 33 million and 23 million times respectively. Josh has also raked in 28 million downloads in quick time while Trell and Chingari’s download numbers are little over 20 million.
Gaining traction in the presence of over a dozen platforms with a dedicated app in the category won’t be an easy task for Facebook. However, looking at the number of users, hours spent on the platform and better user experience may help the Mark Zuckerberg-led firm.