YouTube Shorts now available on TV, as platform targets big screen growth

YouTube has just unveiled its latest user innovation aimed at blurring the boundaries between social media and traditional TV viewing. As of today, it is now possible to watch YouTube Shorts on the big screen, which the company calls its “fastest-growing surface”.

As of Spring 2022, views of YouTube Shorts videos hit 30 billion per day – and the company is aiming to bring advertising to the format by 2023. Against that backdrop, an assault on big screen share of voice has a persuasive commercial logic.

Neal Mohan, YouTube chief product officer, said: “Shorts have transformed the way people create and watch video on YouTube. When we introduced this new format, we optimised the experience for the mobile creator and viewer. Today, we’re expanding access our fastest growing surface: the TV screen.”

In terms of user experience, YouTube undertook research which suggested there would be unique perks of watching Shorts on the big screen. They’re easier to watch with others, for example, and the larger screen makes it a more comfortable viewing experience. But Mohan says it hasn’t been an easy transition: “While this may seem like a natural next step, an incredible amount of thought and care has gone into bringing this vertical, mobile-first experience to the big screen.”

Product managers, engineers, designers and researchers from the Shorts and TV teams came together to ensure the Shorts experience on TV felt consistent with what the community sees on mobile and also natural

YouTube Shorts on TV

Neal Mohan

on the bigger screen.

The latest encroachment into TV is part of a wave of innovations revealed by YouTube in recent weeks. In October, it reorganised its platform architecture so that it is easier for YouTube creators to direct audiences towards different stylres and lengths of content. And last week it unveiled streamer aggregation service Primetime Channels. The company has also built up a robust AVOD offering and has 5 million subscribers to its premium content service YouTubeTV.

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