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YouTube Shorts Now Garner 50 Billion Daily Views, Google Reports

Google is making significant strides against TikTok and Instagram in the battle for short-form video dominance on social media. In its latest earnings conference, the tech giant revealed that YouTube Shorts now averages over 50 billion views per day, a notable jump from the 30 billion daily views reported in the first quarter of 2022.

Despite Instagram and Facebook having larger user bases, YouTube Shorts falls short in terms of daily views. In October, Meta announced that Reels on Facebook and Instagram collectively averaged 140 billion daily views.

YouTube, much like other platforms, has been actively promoting its Shorts format. Last November, YouTube launched its Shorts on TV platform, following TikTok’s earlier move to make its app available on big-screen platforms like Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, and select LG and Samsung smart TVs.

As of last year, YouTube reported that 1.5 billion logged-in users were watching Shorts each month. In comparison, TikTok had 1 billion monthly active users in 2021, while Instagram boasts over 2 billion. Although Instagram is saturated with short videos, the platform hasn’t disclosed specific viewer numbers for Reels.

The growing popularity of short videos is good news for Google, but the company still faces the challenge of monetizing this content. YouTube’s Q4 2022 revenue was $7.96 billion, down 8% from $8.63 billion the previous year. In November 2022, YouTube reported over 80 million global users for its Music and Premium services, though it did not specify the revenue from these subscriptions.

To attract more creators, YouTube introduced a new initiative on February 1, allowing Shorts creators to earn a share of the platform’s advertising revenue. Additionally, YouTube began testing shopping and affiliate marketing features within Shorts last November to enhance the platform’s capabilities.

Philipp Schindler, Google’s Chief Business Officer, expressed satisfaction with the early success in monetizing Shorts during the earnings call. Ruth Porat, YouTube’s CFO, emphasized the company’s focus on sustained growth in Shorts engagement and monetization.

Google’s approach aligns with Meta’s priorities. Meta’s leadership has also highlighted the importance of Instagram Reels and the company’s algorithmic recommendation engine as key areas of focus for the coming months.

The rapid growth of YouTube Shorts reflects a broader trend of increasing consumption of short-form video content. Platforms like TikTok have transformed user engagement, pushing other social media giants to innovate. As competition heats up, YouTube Shorts’ success will hinge on attracting viewers and creators while effectively monetizing content to drive revenue growth.