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Facebook is testing a TikTok-style short video format on its main app in India

This new test comes in as Facebook continues to try and cash in on the absence of TikTok following its ban in late June. Reels was first launched in India last month before launching in other markets.

A 3D-printed Facebook logo is seen placed on a keyboard in this illustration taken March 25, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration
A 3D-printed Facebook logo is seen placed on a keyboard in this illustration taken March 25, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration (REUTERS)

After Lasso, a TikTok clone that Facebook has been testing in several markets, and Reels on Instagram, Facebook is no exploring one more option to get a TikTok-like experience. This time, it’s on the main Facebook app itself.

Facebook is currently testing short-form videos in the Facebook app in India. There is a dedicated ‘Short Videos’ section within the news feed with the ‘Create’ button on top of it. If you click on the ‘Create’ button, the Facebook Camera gets launched and users can browse videos by swiping up.

A Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch that short-form videos are extremely popular and that they are looking for new ways to provide this experience for their users on the platform itself.

This feature was first spotted by Matt Navarra, a social media consultant, who tweeted about it.

This new test comes in as Facebook continues to try and cash in on the absence of TikTok following its ban in late June. Reels was first launched in India last month before launching in other markets.

A source told TechCrunch that daily engagement of Facebook’s services in India have increased by more than 25% since the TikTok ban.

A whole bunch of local startups like Twitter-backed ShareChat, Times Internet’s Gaana and MX Player, have launched standalone apps or have integrated features that replicate the kind of experience TikTok provided

Scores of local startups, including Twitter-backed ShareChat and Times Internet’s Gaana and MX Player streaming services, have launched standalone apps or have integrated features over the last few weeks to replicate the social experience TikTok provided to users. These local apps have claimed to have added tens of millions of new users over this time.

YouTube has also rolled out a similar feature - a section for short videos. This feature is still being tested and more users have gotten access to it in India recently.

India was TikTok’s largest userbase and as the ByteDance-owned app tries to figure out a way to re-enter the Indian market, they care currently speaking to Reliance Industries to sell stake in TikTok’s local business, other platforms are doing what they can to encash in on the huge space left empty by its ban.

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