tech2 News Staff Oct 25, 2018 13:43 PM IST
If you thought Snapchat is the only app that Facebook copies all the time, Facebook is here to prove you wrong. As per a few former employees, the social media juggernaut is working on a new video and music app that will reportedly compete with the Musical.ly (now known as TikTok).
As more and more teens flock to Instagram, Facebook may not be too worried about losing business, but definitely intends to win back their attention to their main app. Emulating TikTok is what they feel is the best way forward to get more engagement.
The new standalone app named Lasso will be designed under the leadership of Facebook’s lead product designer Brady Voss who is previously known to have worked on Facebook TV.
Describing the app, a person familiar with the matter told TechCrunch in a report, "It’s basically TikTok/Musical.ly. It’s full-screen, built for teens, fun and funny and focused on creation."
Facebook is also adding lip-sync live feature to Facebook pages starting today, in addition to which there will also be a display of lyrics onscreen, turning it into a karaoke-like experience. The sudden push towards making music more visually appealing on its platform, Facebook has also rolled out music stickers that users can add to their Facebook stories.
"And, we're bringing it to News Feed, too!," Facebook said in a statement on Wednesday, adding that users would soon be able to add songs to their Profile as well.
Adding a song to a photo or video on Facebook works in the same way, the feature functions on Instagram.
Just take a photo or video, tap on the sticker icon and select the music sticker. Once you find the song of your choice, you can pick the perfect part to share and add the sticker with the artist and song name.
Users can move the sticker around and add other stickers and effects to customise their story.
Though it does come across as a sudden push on Facebook's end, company sources told TechCrunch that Facebook has been investigating the teen music app space since 2016 and that there was a research project set up to look into Musical.ly (now called TikTok). However, with Musical.ly not gaining immediate prominence in 2016, Facebook took its foot off the gas on launching something on similar grounds.
Their efforts received gusto earlier this year after it secured deals with almost every major record label there is including Warner Music Group, Sony and Universal Music. What started off as a way to keep users’ videos from being taken down for copyright infringement, soon evolved into the introduction of music stickers on Instagram.
TikTok, meanwhile, has over 100 million downloads on the Google Play Store and according to App Annie, has climbed from being ranked 32 in terms of overall popularity in the US three years back to being currently ranked 5.
TikTok is also not the only app who's business Facebook is after. Even dating app Tinder is facing stiff competition from Facebook which intends to launch its dating app soon and has apparently already begun public testing in certain regions.