Could this be another challenger in the short-form video space?
As per the PR release:
"Likee, the fourth-most downloaded video app in the world, behind Facebook and Instagram, is making its move into the U.S. market. Offering short-form (15-second) videos – recorded and live-streamed – Likee is at the forefront of a revolution in how people consume and interact with content. Driven by its superior video creation suite, advanced Artificial Intelligence-based curation and 4D effects, extensive music library and over 1000 video effects including beauty and video filters and stickers, Likee has seen explosive growth since its launch in late 2017."
Indeed, Likee has seen significant growth. The app is now up to 115 million monthly active users, after seeing a more than 200% jump in its audience in 2019. Likee also recently came out on top of the App Annie 'Breakout Apps and Games' listing for 2019, which is based on growth in downloads and/or consumer spend throughout the previous year.
So why is Likee so popular?
As noted above, Likee offers a range of video creation and editing tools, including effects, touch-up options, and "4D effects".
As you can see in this video, the "4D" element relates to specialized, movie-style graphics which provide another creative consideration for your Likee clips. They don't look significantly different to other filter options in other apps, but they do look impressive, and have no doubt contributed to Likee's popularity.
In addition to this, Likee also has live-streaming functionality and a face swap feature that it calls "FaceMagic", which enables users to "be any superstar or movie role that you like instantly".
Interestingly, TikTok is also experimenting with a similar 'deepfake' style tool for video clips, which comes with its own range of concerns.
Likee has seen most of its growth in Southeast Asia, though it's also now growing in Russia and India as well. And now it's looking to push into the US market - which could put the squeeze on TikTok, especially with so many people confined to their homes and looking for new ways to keep themselves engaged and active.
Definitely, it seems like it could have potential. Will it become the next big thing? Will it slow TikTok? You would think that with so many short-form video options, that has to have a broader impact on take-up - but eventually, one will rise above.
TikTok has a significant head start, but Likee could be well-worth keeping an eye on in the coming months.