Millennials want their videos accessible anytime, anywhere.
Perhaps this is why video-sharing website YouTube continues to be the preferred platform among the younger set. As a matter of fact, a 2013 study by research provider eMarketer revealed that YouTube was the social media website American users aged 14 to 34 visited the most.
Here in the Philippines, a survey found that nine out of 10 Filipinos go to YouTube first whenever they’re looking for videos. The ability to choose which content users will watch—compared with traditional platforms which feed the viewers with content—and the power to consume it whenever and wherever it is convenient for them, give YouTube its appeal to users especially to the generation that wants to get things fast.
“Filipinos watch videos at 75 minutes per session on mobile,” informs Google Philippines Country Marketing Manager Gabby Roxas. Citing a third party survey, Roxas reveals Pinoys watch music, comedy, films, trailers, documentaries, how-tos and user generated videos the most.
However, the almost snail-like Internet speed in the country makes watching videos online an unpleasant experience. Then comes YouTube Lounge.
“Grab a snack and sit back as you watch your favorite videos on YouTube at a much faster pace.”
That is what Google Philippines wants to give users of the video-sharing website in the Philippines as it partners with Ayala Malls to launch YouTube Lounge. The lounge is the first YouTube-branded space where mall-goers can watch faster-loading videos with the help of Accelerator technology.
“We built this for our users,” emphasizes Roxas. “The YouTube Lounge is where they can have the best YouTube experience through our Accelerator technology.”
The YouTube Accelerator is a pilot program currently being tested in the Philippines since February this year. The said technology lets users watch videos on the website with less buffering time by means of distributing the load on shared Wi-Fi networks.
Users can head to the lounge—which is an open pop-up stall—access the free Accelerator Wi-Fi connection provided by Globe Telecom, go to their smartphone’s YouTube app (YouTube Accelerator is available only on Android devices at the moment), and watch over 100,000 accelerated videos available on the website with no extra charge (accelerated videos have the Accelerator badge).
“We are the first country in the world to receive accelerated YouTube videos,” enthuses the Google Philippines official.
Aside from YouTube Accelerator, the site also offers its YouTube Offline feature that lets offline viewing.
The first YouTube lounge opened at Greenbelt 5 on Sept. 29, followed by the lounge at UP Town Center on Oct. 6. It will soon be present at four more other Ayala Malls: Glorietta on Oct. 13, TriNoma on Oct. 26, Market! Market! on Nov. 9 and Alabang Town Center on Nov. 16. The lounges are set to stay in malls for a year.
Google Philippines promises that additional lounges will also be launched at Ayala Malls in Taguig, Fairview, Pampanga, Subic, Nuvali, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu and Davao sometime during year-end.
Recognizing the importance of their content creators, the YouTube Lounges will also serve as event spaces for meet-and-greets of popular local “YouTubers,” such as Team Kramer, Erwan Heussaff, Mikey Bustos, Lloyd Cadena, Bogart the Explorer, Janina Vela, Wil Dasovich, Kristine Roces, Say Tioco, Clara Benin, Chris Cantada, Ralph Jay and Joyce Sola.
“Content creators make YouTube unique, that’s why we built this for them as well. For them to have an accessible platform to connect and engage with their fans,” shares Roxas.
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