Google’s YouTube on Monday announced its own competitor to TikTok called ‘Shorts’ – a new short-form video experience for creators and artists who want to shoot short, catchy videos using their mobile phones.
Videos in YouTube Shorts will be 15 seconds or less and will allow users to use a new, multi-segment camera to string multiple video clips together, record videos with music from YouTube’s large library of songs for their original content, speed controls, and a timer and countdown to easily record, hands-free.
Shorts will be first made available to users in India over the next few days with YouTube rolling out an early beta of Shorts along with a handful of new creation tools for testing purposes.
According to YouTube, although this is an “early version of the product”, it is being released now to bring together users, creators, and artists to build and improve Shorts.
The company will continue to add more features and expand to more countries in the next few months based on the feedback received from users, creators, and artists. Shorts will be available within the YouTube app on Android and will expand to iOS devices in the coming months.
“Every month, 2 billion viewers come to YouTube to laugh, learn, and connect. Creators have built entire businesses on YouTube, and we want to enable the next generation of mobile creators to also grow a community on YouTube with Shorts,” Chris Jaffe, VP of Product Management for YouTube said in the announcement blog post.
“We encourage any mobile creator or artist to start uploading their existing short videos on YouTube today to start getting discovered.”
YouTube has moved the create ‘+’ icon to the bottom tab in Android to encourage creators to upload their videos to Shorts. To check if you have access to Shorts, tap on the “+” icon and select Video. If you can view ‘Create a short video’, this means you have access to the Shorts camera.
The online video-sharing platform also recently added a row on the YouTube homepage especially for short videos, and introduced a new watch experience that lets users to easily swipe vertically from one video to the next, plus discover other similar short videos.
Those interested in learning more about how to create Shorts can check out YouTube’s forum post.