Original video content is getting a new home at Facebook.
The social network on Wednesday introduced Watch, a new video platform for programming produced exclusively for Facebook users. The new feature, which will be available on mobile, desktop and Facebook’s TV apps, is a continuation of the video push Facebook launched last year.
“On Facebook, videos are discovered through friends and bring communities together,” Daniel Danker, Facebook director of product, wrote in a blog post. “As more and more people enjoy this experience, we’ve learned that people like the serendipity of discovering videos in News Feed, but they also want a dedicated place they can go to watch videos.”
Video has been crucial for Facebook as the social network tries to get people to spend more time on its site. In 2016, the company added a video tab to the Facebook app, where people can find new video content.
The company has also made a big push in Facebook Live, a feature that lets people broadcast themselves live over the internet and directly onto the social network. CEO Mark Zuckerberg sees the format as the future of his company and has said we’re entering a “golden age for live video.”
The Watch feature will be personalized, suggesting new shows — both live and recorded — based on what your friends and communities are watching. Categories will include “Most Talked About,” “What’s Making People Laugh” and “What Friends Are Watching.” A Watchlist will help users keep track of programs.
Some of the programming Facebook plans to present includes Nas Daily, in which the rapper makes videos with his fans; Gabby Bernstein, a motivational speaker answering fans questions in real time; and a cooking show called Tastemade’s Kitchen Little that follows kids’ efforts to instruct chefs in the art of cooking. One Major League Baseball game will also be broadcast live on the platform each week.
The feature will initially be available to a limited number of users in the US, with a broader expansion promised “soon.”
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