Dhaka, 30 August, Abnews: Facebook’s Watch video-streaming service is rolling out worldwide, just over a year after its US launch.
Users will be able to choose from a range of shows – from both established brands and new players – and have the ability to view clips saved from their News Feeds.
The firm plans to allow all content creators to feature advertising breaks, so long as they hit certain metrics.
Until now, only select publishers had been given the opportunity.
To begin with, only videos shown to audiences in the UK, US, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand will have this facility.
The revenue split will be 55% to the creators and 45% to Facebook.
Facebook had intended to reveal the roll-out on Wednesday, but brought forward the announcement after details leaked. As a consequence, some users may not be able to access its pages yet.
Watch is often portrayed as a rival to Google’s YouTube, but it also competes for attention against traditional TV channels as well as online outlets including Netflix, Amazon Video, BBC iPlayer and Facebook’s own Instagram TV.
A study published last week suggests that it only had niche appeal in its first year in the US.
Of 1,632 adult Facebook users questioned, 50% had never heard of Watch, while 24% said they were aware of the on-demand service but had never used it, according to the Diffusion Group.
Only 14% told the market research firm that they used it at least once a week.
Another report noted that although some Watch shows had attracted audiences numbering in their millions, they often struggled to retain them.
“This seems to be a pattern with most Facebook Watch shows: lots of people sample, few return,” wrote Verne Gay for Newsday.
Even so, some big name stars have been involved in original programming made for the platform. – BBC