Google-owned video streaming giant YouTube first launched its Shorts feature to rival TikTok back in India last year. The move came a few months after the government of India banned a sum of 59 Chinese apps in the region due to political strains between the two countries. TikTok was included in the list of apps.
Fast forward to today and the video-based social media platform has finally expanded the availability of the short-form video sharing feature to another region. The beta of YouTube Shorts is now available in the U.S. A special row has been assigned for YouTube Shorts on the video streaming platform. For increased usability, mobile users will be able to tap on the Shorts and swipe through them vertically.
In addition to the U.S. launch, YouTube has also announced that it will be adding more tools to the TikTok rival in addition to the ones previously available. Shorts content creators will now be able to remix audio samples from other Shorts videos to create new content. To enhance this tool even further, YouTube has promised that over the course of the oncoming months, creators will be able to sample audio from all videos on the platform.
Other upgrades for Shorts creators include the ability to insert text at certain points in clips and a licensed library of songs for people to use without fear of copyright infringement. To make this possible, YouTube has joined hands with over 250 record labels such as Sony Music Entertainment and Publishing, Warner Music Group, and more. On the flip side, viewers who listen to parts of songs in Shorts will be able to identify them within YouTube.
In today's announcement, it was also revealed that YouTube has spent over $30 billion in payments to artists, creators and media companies. The Google-owned company is looking to monetize the Shorts feature but specifics haven't been decided yet and various options are under consideration at the moment.