Many filmmakers and video enthusiasts hate it, and have long lamented the loss of quality in shooting in this ‘inferior’ way. But the fact is that more people are consuming video content in vertical mode, with the rapid growth of the Stories format fueling new habitual behaviors.
And as such, content creators need to adjust in-step.
The latest development on this front comes from YouTube, which will now enable users to view vertical videos on the web, as well as within the mobile app.
As explained by Engadget:
“If you're watching a taller-than-usual clip, YouTube will both enlarge the video appropriately and scrap the dreaded black bars. This won't make you forget that you're watching footage originally intended for phones - it will, however, make the experience slightly less jarring.”
The update, first spotted by Android Police, adds to YouTube’s mobile app update last year which included new responsive tools to cater for vertically shot content.
As noted, the update – while it won’t be welcomed by all – caters to the increasing demand for vertical video. That demand has been stoked by rising Stories usage – across Facebook’s family of apps alone, there are now more than a billion people engaging with Stories every day, while Stories usage is also growing at 15x the rate of feed content.
Demand for vertical video is likely to see further growth with the arrival of IGTV – so while adding in more vertical viewing options on YouTube may seem out of place, it makes perfect sense for the platform to more with demand, and facilitate usage trends.
If you’ve been resisting vertical video, now may be the time to start experimenting. It’s not for everyone, and yes, there are quality compromises you may need to accept. But the trends tell the tale – Facebook says that Stories are on track to overtake the News Feed as the primary social sharing platform sometime this year.
Worth listening to user demand.