Facebook has announced their next platform to be released, a video streaming service called Watch. Many are pointing to the new Watch as being Facebook’s answer to YouTube TV, although Facebook says they are capitalizing on their own success with making video available on their platform. Watch will serve as a hub to help users find content instead of relying on the normal Facebook News Feed or through the Video tab that is available to U.S. users.
Facebook describes Watch as a “platform for all creators and publishers to find an audience, build a community of passionate fans, and earn money for their work.” For the end user, Facebook hopes Watch makes it easier to discover new shows and connect with friends about shows that they too may be watching.
Facebook notes in their announcement that their analysis of viewer habits has revealed four types of shows that tend to be successful. They include:
- Engaging shows in which the video producer involves the audience in the production of the final project, similar to what Nas Daily does.
- Connecting shows like Gabby Bernstein episodes, whether live or recorded, in which she responds to questions from fans.
- Story-telling shows whether they follow a narrative arc or use a consistent theme or format from one episode to the next, like Kitchen Little.
- Live events like the weekly games being broadcast by Major League Baseball.
Watch will bring all of these types of videos, and others, together in one place to make it easier for users to access the content and perhaps more importantly, ensure they don’t miss an episode.
Facebook says the initial roll-out will be to a limited group of users in the U.S. with plans for wider distribution to follow. The same will be true on the content creation side where only a limited group of creators will be able to setup Shows until everything is tuned in just right and the platform is ready for others to join.