Facebook is ready to turn on what promises to a a pre-eminently irritating new feature that will make all our devices even noisier.
In the coming weeks, the company will launch an update that means all of the auto-play videos that currently litter your news feed will automatically play with the sound on. But why? Well, apparently it’s what the majority of users want after Facebook claimed testing showed a good reaction and it received ‘positive feedback’.
“With this update, sound fades in and out as you scroll through videos in News Feed, bringing those videos to life. As people watch more video on phones, they’ve come to expect sound when the volume on their device is turned on,” Facebook announced.
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Don’t worry though, your phone isn’t about to start blurting out the sounds of a food mixer when you whizz past another auto play recipe vid. As long as your device is set to silent no sound will be heard and there’s also an option to turn off the feature by switching off the ‘Videos in News Feed Start With Sound’ option in settings.
Another exciting addition to its video arsenal is the ability to watch a video whilst scrolling down your news feed. From now on you can minimise the video you are watching to a picture-in-picture view in the corner of the screen, much like the YouTube app, and continue to scroll the News Feed at the same time. Android users have it even better as you can keep the video playing in the corner of the phone even after you’ve left the Facebook app.
Facebook is also moving to improve vertical videos on mobile devices in the shape of a new larger preview of that type of video on iOS and Android devices.
The final part of the update involves a new Facebook Video App for TV that will soon hit the app stores for Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Samsung Smart TV. The app optimises the viewing experience on larger devices and further underlines Facebook’s huge push into the wider video space.
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Is adding sound to auto-play videos a bad idea on Facebook’s part? Let us know in the comments.