YouTube Launches Shorts, Its New TikTok Competitor

Users will soon be able to make 15-second clips set to music, just like the wildly popular app Oracle just struck a deal with

YouTube on Monday said it’ll be rolling out Shorts, a new feature that’ll allow users to create quick-hit videos that run 15 seconds or less — making Shorts the latest TikTok competitor to hit the market.

“Shorts is a new way to express yourself in 15 seconds or less,” YouTube VP Chris Jaffe wrote in a blog post on Monday. Jaffe said users will be able to “string multiple video clips together,” have the option to add music from a “large library that will continue to grow,” and also use “speed controls” that give users the “flexibility” to edit their videos in a creative way.

The feature will first launch in India this week. While no U.S. launch date was announced, YouTube said Shorts will add more features — and expand to more countries — in the coming months.

YouTube’s push into quick-hit clips comes only a few months after Facebook-owned Instagram debuted its own Tiktok clone, dubbed Reels. Like TikTok, it also allowed users to make snappy 15-second videos. It’s worth mentioning Reels, before hitting the U.S. this summer, was tested for more than 6 months in different international markets.

Monday’s Shorts announcement also comes a day after Bytedance, TikTok’s Beijing-based parent company, denied Microsoft’s bid for its U.S. operations and accepted Oracle’s deal instead. (TheWrap had reported in late August Oracle had emerged as the front-runner for TikTok’s U.S. operations, after President Trump signed an executive order,giving the company 90 days to sell its American business to an American company.)

YouTube, which is owned by tech giant Alphabet, has plenty of room to make up if it’s looking to win over users from TikTok, after the popular app announced on Monday it had 100 million monthly users in Europe — matching its user base in the U.S.

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