Google announced today that its YouTube app is finally available for download in iTunes.
This is a shiny new app for iPhone and iPod touch built by YouTube engineers, unlike the previous one built and pulled earlier this year by Apple. And it comes mere moments before Apple’s expected launch of the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 release scheduled for tomorrow, 12 Sept.
Over on the official blog, Andrey Doronichev, head of YouTube mobile says that new features include users being able to “flip through related videos, comments and more info, all while watching a video.” He also states that the engineers are “working on an optimized version of the YouTube app for iPad in the coming months,” and urges people to stay tuned for more details.
Meanwhile, what does the new app mean for storytellers? Basically, access to more content with improved ways of sharing. Important if you have your own channel. Important for making money, if that’s how you roll on YouTube.
And speaking of money, here’s the rub – YouTube now also shows Google ads.
There are several reasons to be happy with the specialised Apple app. The new and improved content channels include official music videos plus tv and movie content from Google Play. Search functionality is very intuitive with an autofill feature for search terms. With a swipe to the right from any screen, your channels are visible. Videos with closed captioning also appear, giving users a choice of text languages they can then read underneath the video.
And sharing is now at the touch of a button – straight through to Google +, Facebook, Twitter, or email. We already know that videos are shared 12 times more than links and text posts combined, so perhaps we will see even more strategies for video in the content marketing mix with the launch of this app.
The only thing lacking from its Android counterpart is the ability to preload videos for viewing without an internet connection, which Google unfortunately explains as an iOS issue.
With a current estimated 1 billion views just on YouTube mobile a day – a staggering 25% of its total – it will be interesting to see how YouTube’s popularity rises through greater access with Apple.
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