YouTube Viewership Hits 1 Billion Hours a Day

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YouTube viewers worldwide are watching a billion hours of video content each day, the company reports, positioning the video-sharing site for its next big move—capturing more TV ad dollars.

According to The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the story, the milestone is fueled by YouTube’s personalized algorithms, which recommend videos to users and are designed “to keep them watching longer.”Other factors have contributed to the increase in viewership, including the shift to mobile: A growing number of people have internet access via their mobile devices, and more than 60 percent of YouTube watch time now happens on mobile and tablets.

In 2012, YouTube changed the way it measured viewership, switching from the number of clicks a video receives to the time spent watching videos. Since then, viewership is up 10-fold. As YouTube said on its blog, “we thought the amount of time someone spent watching a video was a better way to understand whether a viewer really enjoyed it.”

The Alphabet-owned company appears to have a leg up on other platforms: Facebook reported just over a year ago that its users watch 100 million hours of video a day, while Netflix said its users watched more than 116 million hours a day in 2015. Meanwhile, as the Journal pointed out, YouTube’s global popularity almost matches the popularity of television in the US: Nielsen data indicates Americans watch around 1.25 billion hours of live and recorded TV a day.

Meanwhile, as part of its efforts to boost global viewership, the company last fall introduced a lightweight YouTube app for India.

Source: eMarketer, zdnet

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