Facebook testing Instant Videos that can download over Wi-Fi
Facebook is testing a new Instant Videos feature that makes sure you’ll always have videos ready to watch — and you won’t have to waste your data plan downloading them.
The feature is called Instant Videos and we all familiar with instant articles feature click to read no loading but in case of videos they will download when connected to Wi-FI network and will play instantly with just one click. But like instant articles this feature only works on Facebook app. This feature was first spotted by The Next Web’s Matt Navarra and was later confirmed by TechCrunch.
Instant Videos appear to serve a few different purposes. For one, Facebook cares a ton about video right now, and it can potentially boost viewership and improve the viewing experience by having clips ready to go, without any loading time. Downloading them on Wi-Fi also saves cellular data and might encourage more viewing on mobile, since people will know they don’t have to eat into their cellular plan.
It’s also possible that, like Instant Articles — the quick-loading news stories that Facebook hosts for publishers — Facebook could be looking for stronger control over its video ecosystem and could grant publishers certain benefits for making videos that fall within its guidelines. For now though, Facebook doesn’t seem to be doing that.
Facebook confirmed to TechCrunch that it’s testing Instant Videos with a small percentage of people using its Android app. There’s no indication yet of whether this feature will roll out wider. It’s not entirely clear how Facebook is putting it to use either, such as whether these videos are ones that would algorithmically appear at the top of your News Feed, or if they come from Facebook’s new video hub.
But if Facebook wants to be the social network of tomorrow, not just today, it knows it must whole-heartedly embrace video, which can deliver more vivid entertainment and interpersonal connection than text or photos. Interaction with mobile video is skyrocketing, according to a NewsWhip study shared by eMarketer showing a massive 53 percent year-over-year increase in engagement with news outlet videos on Instagram.
Video also carries lucrative advertisements that are closer to the television commercials that brands are accustomed to making. Getting people accustomed to watching organic videos can make them more receptive to watching video ads. Plus, Facebook is starting to allow video creators and publishers to insert video ad breaks into the middle of their clips, and splits the revenue, with 55 percent going to the creator. Instant Videos could potentially include these ad breaks.