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YouTube’s New CEO Neal Mohan Stresses Support for Creators, Push Into AI as 2023 Priorities

The online video sharing platform will also double down in streaming and podcasting

YouTube’s new CEO Neal Mohan has outlined the online video sharing platform’s priorities for 2023.

“In its earliest start up days, I saw YouTube’s potential. Now, I’m incredibly excited to lead it into the future,” Mohan wrote in a letter on Wednesday. “As I look ahead to what’s next for YouTube, I’m confident we’ll put our full energy into what matters most for creators and viewers.”

One key priority for Mohan will be continuing to support YouTube creators by providing them with more ways to make money, helping them grow their communities and offering new features such as automatic and machine translated captions to broaden accessibility and the ability for viewers to remix clips of gaming content into its Shorts platform. A new creation tool will also launch later this year that will let creators record in a side-by-side layout with both Shorts and YouTube videos so they can easily add their own take on a trend or join in with reactions.

YouTube is also doubling down on streaming and podcasting.

The company plans to launch Primetime Channels, a new way for users to watch content from their favorite streaming services on the YouTube app, and will distribute its NFL Sunday Ticket on PrimeTime Channels and YouTube TV. Later this year, YouTube TV will also roll out a new feature that lets viewers watch multiple games at once.

It will also add new features to YouTube Studio to make podcasts easier to publish and will bring audio and video-first podcasts to millions of people who use YouTube Music in the United States, with more regions to come. Later this year, RSS integration will give podcasters another way to upload their shows to YouTube and give users more listening options.

A third area the company is focusing on is generative artificial intelligence capabilities.

Mohan said that the company would roll out features in the coming months that would allow creators to virtually swap outfits or create fantastical film settings. He emphasized that the features are being developed with “thoughtful guardrails” in mind.

Mohan, who previously served as chief product officer, took over the reins from former CEO Susan Wojcicki after she announced in February she would step back and “start a new chapter focused on my family, health, and personal projects I’m passionate about.”

At the time, she said that Mohan had a “wonderful sense for our product, our business, our creator and user communities, and our employees,” adding that she would support him during the transition period by continuing to work with some YouTube teams, coaching team members, and meeting with creators. Wojcicki also said she would take on an advisory role across Google and Alphabet.

YouTube, which saw its advertising revenue fall 8% year over year to $7.96 billion in the fourth quarter of 2022, has grown to more than 2.6 billion active users. YouTube Music and Premium have surpassed 80 million subscribers, including trialers, and YouTube Shorts is averaging 50 billion daily views.

“The magic of our platform is that creators, artists, advertisers, and viewers can come together to do something amazing,” Mohan concluded. “This is what motivates me and everyone at YouTube to do our best work every single day. And we will continue to do so as we work to make our platform an even better place to share stories, learn new skills, access information, and build community. Because the best of YouTube is yet to come.”