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Science
09 Mar 2019

Soon, you and your friends could watch Instagram videos together

Instagram to let users 'co-watch' content together

Facebook is doubling down on Instagram's content-first strategy with a handy new feature.

The photo-sharing platform is working on a capability that would let users watch videos together with their friends, recent code changes have indicated.

The option could be similar to Facebook's own 'Watch Party' but as of now, it is not clear when it might be available.

Here are the details.

In context

Instagram to let users 'co-watch' content together
'Co-watch content' discovered in Instagram' code

Discovery

'Co-watch content' discovered in Instagram' code

Famous tech tipster Jane Manchun Wong recently spotted a feature called 'co-watch content' in Instagram Direct Messaging's code, TechCrunch reported.

The name of the feature and certain elements of its code indicate that the platform would let users co-watch videos - maybe stories, IGTV videos, or feed clips - from a certain user-defined 'playlist' or a 'suggested' section of algorithmically arranged content.

Here's what Wong tweeted

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Questions

Many details, however, still remain unclear

As of now, it is not clear what the feature would look like when it rolls out or if Instagram would offer a picture-in-picture view to let users see each other's reactions while watching a clip.

Instagram also denied commenting on the development of the feature, which indicates the feature is still internal and may take a while to reach the public.

Either way, this shows Facebook's focus on active engagement

Focus

Either way, this shows Facebook's focus on active engagement

The discovery of this feature reflects on Facebook's content-first strategy for Instagram and shows the company is working to increase engagement around videos.

To recall, Facebook already has a 'Watch Party' feature that allows people on Groups to watch videos together and react and comment on them at the same time.

Meanwhile, it's working on a similar feature for Messenger as well.

Benefit

Also, co-viewing opens room for revenue generation

With co-viewing in Instagram and Messenger, Facebook would not just boost engagement (particularly for creator-focused IGTV) but also open new avenues for ad-revenue.

For instance, the company could share sponsored content, place ads from brands in videos watched by the users.

Also, to note, the social network already plans to merge the backend of Instagram DMs, Messenger, and WhatsApp in the future.

Ask NewsBytes
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Most asked questions

When will this feature roll out?

Which videos will be supported on this feature?

When will Facebook merge Messenger with WhatsApp?

How to delete sent messages on Facebook Messenger?

More questions

When will this feature roll out?

Asked on 09-03-2019 by Chirag Chatterjee

Answered by NewsBytes

As of now, it is not clear when this feature will roll out to the public.

Which videos will be supported on this feature?

Asked on 09-03-2019 by Aarav Gupta

Answered by NewsBytes

Videos hosted on Instagram will be supported for co-watching with the new feature.

When will Facebook merge Messenger with WhatsApp?

Asked on 09-03-2019 by Dhruv Rathore

Answered by NewsBytes

Facebook is working on the plan but it is not clear when it will merge the underlying infrastructure of Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp.

How to delete sent messages on Facebook Messenger?

Asked on 09-03-2019 by Surabhi Rangarajan

Answered by NewsBytes

You can retract sent messages by long-pressing on them and hitting the 'Delete for everyone' button.

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