By Sahil Patel
From the stage at VidCon, YouTube announced that it’s planning to open a production studio in New York. Dubbed YouTube Space NY — similar to what the company offers to creators and brands in LA, London, and Tokyo — the studio will open in October 2014 in Manhattan. The facilities are open to creators for free.
“It’s going to be a place where we can bring together creators and advertisers to learn, share, and create — we’re pumped,” Tom Pickett, YouTube vice president and global head of content operations said from the stage.
That is the most interesting element of YouTube Space NY — its proximity to Madison Avenue. Ideally, if YouTube is able to create an environment which educates both advertisers and creators and enables them to work together in a way that appease everyone, then maybe some of the issues that some creators have with advertisers (and vice versa) will go away. Ideally.
There were a bevy of other announcements from the video site during its presentation at the conference.
YouTube unveiled a feature called Top Fans, which will give creators the ability to engage directly with their fans via Google+. The feature will allow creators to add their most-engaged fans into Circles, which can be used to message these fans directly. (This feels very much like a response to the gripes coming from the creator community about their inability to “control” their relationship with their audience. Incidentally, it won’t hurt Google+’s usage numbers either.)
The site is also making paid channels available to any user with more than 10,000 subscribers.
A new YouTube Audio Library will offer creators more than a hundred instrumental tracks (all commissioned by YouTube) to use in their videos.
The company is also expanding its “live” capabilities to anyone with more than 100 subscribers.
Mobile updates include the ability to watch playlists (both manually and via autoplay) and search for other videos while watching a video.
And, finally here are the latest stats straight from YouTube:
- There are now over 325 channels on YouTube with more than 1 million subscribers.
- YouTube’s mobile app downloads have topped 250 million.
- In fact, 40% of “hours viewed” on YouTube in the US is coming from mobile devices.