The massive growth of user-generated video content after YouTube and now Facebook got into the game has apparently piqued Apple Inc.’s interest. The Cupertino-based iPhone maker plans to develop and release an iOS app for video capture, editing and social sharing on Facebook and Twitter.
According to Mark Gurman at Bloomberg:
“This is more of Apple realizing that it created this so called pie in the app store that Snapchat and Facebook are taking a big chunk of, Now Apple wants a play in this social networking game as well with their own application.”
The exclusive iPhone app will be modeled along the lines of SnapChat or Instagram, and will allow users to upload their videos to their social media accounts.
But wait. Don’t assume that Apple wants to get into the social media space controlled by Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat and the like. They merely want to get in on the video action. They already have a solid video editing platform in iMovie, so this new initiative is likely to take a lot of features from what is currently a standalone piece of software.
Besides, Apple is already in the live video streaming space with the recent tie-up between Apple TV and Twitter’s live streaming of NFL events.
Apple has no plans of monetizing the new app, says Gurman, they’re only in the game to “attract the younger generation of Apple users.”
I would agree that this is something they definitely need. With iPhone and iPad sales on the decline and no one being certain of the upcoming iPhone 7’s success, Apple needs to look to younger users and increased engagement within the ecosystem they’re creating.
Apple has not revealed when the app will be released, nor have they suggested a possible name for it. What’s certain, however, is that Apple is looking to tap into Facebook’s iPhone users and give them a reason to engage with themselves instead of the social giant for their video creation and sharing needs.
One source suggests that Apple is going head to head with SnapChat, but I don’t think that’s the case. Apple does not have enough invested in its ecosystem yet to assume it can create a large social community overnight. The company merely wants more engagement from its existing so it can convert that engagement into device upgrades, Apple Pay usage and so on.
Apple may never move into the social media space, but it looks like they want a piece of the massive video market, which they can then monetize in the future the way they’re doing with Apple News using various forms of advertising.
Knowing the kind of quality that Apple puts out, Facebook and SnapChat should both watch eagerly to see what comes out of the App Store when it’s finally ready. I certainly will be.
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