Today, YouTube is the world’s biggest video streaming website, and the story behind how a new app became a people’s favorite is indeed inspiring. For those who aren’t familiar, YouTube is an online video streaming platform under Google. It is the second most used search engine and the third most visited app. The video streaming website came into being in 2005, and although it meets new sets of competitors every year, no contender has been able to take its place on the top.
The Birth of YouTube
A post shared by Chad Hurley (@chad_hurley)
The co-founders of YouTube were three young men who were previously employees at the same company. They were working for PayPal back when Elon Musk owned it. When eBay acquired PayPal, the three were already owners of considerable profits. They decided to leave their old company and start something of their own.
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The eventual Youtube pioneers were Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim. Chad Hurley was a student of design at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and his colleagues had taken up computer science at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. They came up with the idea of creating YouTube at a party. The friends found that they could not share video files more extensive than a particular size from that party.
The base idea for YouTube was borrowed from Flickr, which was an app that allowed users to share photographs online. The future founders realized they could develop something similar, but instead of sharing images, people could share large file videos. Thus, YouTube was born on 14th February 2005, as stated by Startup Stories. The first video on YouTube was posted by one of the founders, Jawed Karim; it was a 90-second video clip in the zoo.
Google’s Way of Increasing Sales Revenue
Google tried launching its video streaming service, but it was no match for YouTube. In 2006 it acquired this fantastic video streaming app for a whopping $1.6 billion, making it a critical day in the history of YouTube. This deal turned out to be beneficial for both parties. According to CNBC, YouTube today contributes a significant part of the sales revenue to Google’s parent company called Alphabet.
In 2007, this app came up with advertisements that created disappointment amongst viewers due to the interruptions. Though people soon got adapted to it and also bought YouTube Premium for an ad-free viewership.
Launching Various Attractive Features
One of the most attractive feature is the YouTube Partner program, as stated by ColdFusion. It was introduced in May 2007 and allowed users to earn money for their popularity. YouTuber’s had to pay nothing in return except for an internet connection.
The new feature became a major hit globally, resulting in a significant increase in audience participation and interaction. The app’s user-friendly interface made it a pleasant experience for viewers, making it one of the main factors that led to its vast expansion.
Videographers started creating diverse content such as cooking tutorials, crash courses, and various travel documentaries, to name a few. This content was then posted online to be accessible to the rest of the world.
The app came up with an optional subscription facility called YouTube Red which later became YouTube Premium for an ad-free experience. There is also YouTube TV and YouTube for kids, which censors children from watching adult content. One of the latest additions is YouTube Shorts which features short videos posted as ‘stories’ for subscribers to view.
The app was a hit among the masses because it lets people express themselves and earn money. Soon YouTube stars starting emerging, increasing the the brand’s popularity.
The reception of art and music also went through a paradigmatic change. Music artists were previously apprehensive of using this online platform as a mode to distribute their creations. But today, it has become a necessary step in the process of making talent visible and accessible.
Several pop stars earned their celebrity status through YouTube. It would include a still-unknown Justin Bieber. Today one of the highest-paid artists on YouTube is PewDiePie, with about 32 million subscribers, according to Business Insider.
Another hit is Smosh’s channel, run by the comedy duo Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla. Smosh, too, has approximately the same number of subscribers. This list of stars who contributed to the app’s popularity would include Ray William Johnson, MrBeast, and so on.
Today YouTube has become the world’s biggest video streaming website. In 2006, it was worth about $1.6 billion. But by now, its value has increased to more than $170 billion.
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Source: Business Insider, Startup Stories, ColdFusion, CNBC
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