TikTok has begun some experiments and testing of longer-form videos. As reported, these videos could last up to three minutes departing from its original aim of extremely short digestible content.
With many social media sites going the other way to copy TikTok's short-form video's, it is interesting to see TikTok moving the other way. Twitter for example has brought in fleets which have not exactly gone down brilliantly with its users. Instagram on the other hand brought out reels to slightly more success.
Given how tough this year has been for TikTok the company has not brought out much in the way of new features. With issues surrounding its legal status in the U.S., focus was probably elsewhere. However, many would argue that the service is fine as it is and this feature was not required.
TikTok begins testing longer-form videos
As such the response to these new longer-form videos has been somewhat mixed. Many feel that this move is a departure from the platform's identity.
This move sees the limit for videos going up from one minute to three making a significant difference to the way the platform operates. In theory, it gives users more space and opportunities to create content. However, critiques say that this dilutes the purpose of the app.
TikTok has begun a phased roll out of this feature which is currently in an "early access" phase. This means that the majority of users will not notice a difference until they discover a longer than usual video.
The theory behind this phased roll out is probably to get users used to the longer videos. In a sense easing them into the change rather than making it a shock. Given that reports have emerged of it being a jarring change when you see a longer video, this approach could be wise.
It remains to be seen how users will react to this change. Given the assumption, when using TikTok, is to see very short videos adapting to three minute long clips could be a challenge.
TikTok is yet to comment on the story despite an approach from media outlets. Overall, this one will take time to assess the impact of the change. It may well turn out that users find adapting quite easy and this, therefore, offers more in way of freedom to creators.
However, TikTok has taken a big risk in making this change. If they start to lose active users the company could have to make a change quickly.