Last week Facebook announced its newest feature, designed to help you spend even more time on the site. That’s right, if you’re concerned that you aren’t spending nearly enough time on Facebook, this news will help solve your problem.
Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook announced on his Facebook page that Facebook Watch will be coming soon.
But no, Facebook Watch is not a watch at all. Facebook Watch is a streaming video service, somewhat like Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Video, that will be available within Facebook.
Facebook Watch also is part traditional TV in that shows will be scheduled. You can tune in to watch shows as they are released each week at a specific day and time, just like programmed TV.
This video from Facebook introduces Facebook Watch:
Although Facebook Watch is free, some shows will have advertisements.
What You Can Watch on Facebook Watch
What can you watch on Facebook Watch?
Shows will include everything from news to entertainment to sports to reality TV. Some shows will be broadcast live while others will be pre-recorded. Facebook anticipates having hundreds of shows available at first, then eventually thousands of shows will be coming to viewers.
Shows will come from independent third-parties as well as from Facebook itself, which is paying some organizations to produce shows specifically for its new service.
Major League Baseball will be showing one game a week on Facebook Watch. Other shows will come from producers such as A&E, Mashable, NPR, NASA, and National Geographic.
One example of an original Facebook Watch show is Returning the Favor by Mike Rowe, in which the host visits towns where people are doing extraordinary things and then he does something extraordinary in return for those people.
You can nominate people to be included on the show by posting on Mike Rowe’s Facebook page.
Facebook Watch Gets Social
Facebook, which was invented to put “social” into media, has added a social element to this service. Unlike other streaming media or traditional TV, Facebook Watch has added social features to enhance what you watch. From Mark Zuckerberg, “It can be a chance to share an experience and bring people together who care about the same things.”
You’ll be able to add comments on Facebook while you watch and discuss shows with your friends.
Finding Shows to Watch
Facebook has added several features to make it easy to find shows that interest you. Facebook Watch has a Watchlist so you can remember to watch your favorite shows as soon as they become available.
There’s also a Discover tab to help you find shows that interest you.
Additionally, it will suggest shows for you based on which videos others on Facebook react positively to. You’ll see recommendations of popular videos and videos Facebook thinks will be of interest to you, such as Most Talked About or What’s Making People Laugh.
Creating Shows for Facebook Watch
If you’ve always wanted to produce your own show, Facebook Watch may be the place for you to get started. Facebook is trying to make it easier for shows to gain viewers on Facebook Watch with Show Pages. Each show will have a Show Page for viewers to follow to learn more about the show and perhaps interact with the creators of the show.
While Facebook probably won’t pay you to bring a show to Facebook Watch, you could earn revenue from advertising.
You can apply to bring a show to Facebook Watch at the Facebook Watch application page.
Where You Can Watch Facebook Watch
Facebook Watch is currently available to a small group of Facebook users in the US first, to help test for any issues. It will then be available to the entire US, and then to all Facebook users eventually.
When you get access to Facebook Watch, you’ll be able to watch it on the Facebook mobile app, on Facebook’s website and on the Facebook app on Apple TV.
To see whether you have Facebook Watch, look for a TV icon on Facebook.
Do you have Facebook Watch yet? Are you excited about watching shows on Facebook Watch? Would you like to have a show on Facebook Watch?
Share your thoughts in the Comments section below!