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YouTube Shorts could be the latest attempt to ape TikTok

YouTube is about to make a short-form videos push, according to a new report. 

Two insiders leaked the info to The Information, and claimed that we might see the new feature appear by the end of 2020.

And now another source claims that they’ve been given direct confirmation of the project. Writing on Twitter, NBC News reporter Dylan Byers claimed that YouTube’s CEO confirmed the upcoming feature in a soon-to-be-released podcast.

Short-form videos could soon appear in a new feed in the YouTube app and – crucially – creators would be allowed to take advantage of the platform’s hefty music catalogue.

This could throw up some serious competition for TikTok, as a lot of the platform’s viral trends are prompted by particular music tracks.

Related: How to delete your TikTok account

But the greater threat to TikTok might be the sheer number of people who are already on YouTube. The video platform has 2 billion active users versus TikTok’s 800 million. As the new feature would be a simple addition to the already-popular app, YouTube could have a bit of a head-start when it comes to the numbers.

It’s unsurprising that big tech companies are trying to replicate the TikTok format. Even if the TikTok’s user base isn’t quite as large as YouTube’s, it’s still hugely popular and rapidly growing, too.

The app regularly tops the download charts on Google Play and the App Store. And according to mobile analytics company SensorTower, the app was downloaded 104.7 million times in January 2020, which a 46% increase from January 2019.

Related: TikTok tips from a Xennial

It’s also not the first time that a big tech company has tried to sneakily copy the TikTok format. Back in November, a new ‘Reels‘ function appeared on Instagram in Brazil, which allowed users to mix audio and video together.

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