Kunal KhullarSep 27, 2016 19:12:44 IST
Google hosted the second edition of Google for India event today in New Delhi where it announced a variety of products and service made specifically for the country. Among the major announcements was a new app called YouTube Go.
A research team from Google went out to remote as well as urban parts of the country and conducted surveys around its popular video app YouTube. The research concluded that a majority of users were unsatisfied with the video app as it consumed a lot of data and was inconsistent because of poor connectivity. To cater to this issue, a new variant of the app was made.
YouTube Go is said to run smooth on smartphones even on slow 2G connections with almost zero buffering. It has been created to play videos fast. The app will not only adapt to the connection, but also the resolution and performance capability of the device. Google has used a variety of codecs to compress videos so that they can be pushed out on slow networks easily.
There will also be an interesting preview feature which will give users info about the size and screenshots of the video before the video is played. This also helps in telling a user how much of data he or she will be consuming while watching or saving the video offline.
Speaking of which, if you remember, the offline saving feature was rolled out on YouTube a couple of years ago. The same feature has been added to YouTube Go as well. However Google has taken things further and has added a sharing option. With YouTube Go, consumers will be able to save videos and then further share them with their friends and family wirelessly without the need of a mobile or internet data connection. Videos are shared via Wi-Fi direct, are encrypted and will only be viewable in the YouTube Go app. The saved videos will not be accessible via any other app.
Apart from that, YouTube Go will be available in 10 local Indian languages at the time of launch with more additions planned in the future. Apart from regional recommendations, the app suggestions will also be hyperlocal in case multiple users share a device.
YouTube Go is scheduled to go on the Play Store early next year and India will be the first country to get the new app. There is no iOS app as of yet, but it said to be in the works. For now Google is offering users to sign up for the app over here.
Google is clearly focused on India and it said that by solving problems in the country, it is making new and innovative products. It will also be bringing the new Accelerator program to the country soon which includes small units placed at public places that will act as an FTP server for YouTube videos. The program was recently announced in Philippines and is currently testing the same in India. Along with that, a new YouTube feature called Smart Offline is also live where videos can be scheduled to download only in the night so save on bandwidth.
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