On Tuesday, Facebook announced several updates to its in-platform videos, including the upcoming rollout of a standalone app. The new app will let users stream video from their News Feed to Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Samsung Smart TVs.
Facebook’s move is the latest in a series of power moves to impulse a new focus on media and original content. The Mark Zuckerberg-led company is also preparing some changes to its ad revenue model on Facebook Live.
How will Facebook’s video app work?
The latest side app by Facebook will grant users the ability to stream videos from their Saved tab, News Feed, and Live broadcasts using their mobile devices or desktop computers.
To watch Facebook videos using your set-top box, all you will need to do is launching the app, browsing a video on your feed, and selecting the end device where you to want the video to stream.
Doing this won’t interrupt Facebook surfing, as users can continue to look for content on the app without interrupting the ongoing stream on a separate screen.
Moreover, Facebook Live broadcasts will allow you not only to tune in but also to interact through your Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, or Samsung Smart TV.
Some of these functions may not seem as innovative as they are, given that both iOS and Android users can already stream content from their devices to platforms compatible with AirPlay and Google Cast.
However, this dedicated app serves a double purpose for Facebook: give videos an exclusive treatment and push even further for a media-oriented business model that will soon include long-format original content that you can stream almost anywhere.
Facebook did what YouTube hasn’t been to
Along with the upcoming video app, the social network also announced a series of new features that enhance viewers’ experience while using Facebook.
For starters, News Feed videos will now autoplay with the sound turned on. Online reporters and users have already reacted negatively to this change, saying it will make surfing the site more annoying.
Vertical video enhancement support is also coming to the mobile app on both Android and iOS, bringing with it a larger window that does away with small previews that are hard to watch.
Last but not least, a significant upgrade is coming to Facebook with the watch and scroll function. Videos will keep playing in a picture-in-picture window in the corner of your device’s screen. Android users can have videos playing even after they exit the app.