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Twitter Unveils Engage App, Allows Posting of Longer Videos

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Twitter Inc (TWTR - Free Report) has launched a new iOS compatible app, Engage, for creators to allow them to interact with users, keep tabs on engagement levels and evaluate performance of tweets “down to the second”. Also, a few chosen creators will be able to monetize their content directly.

There will also be a curated recommendations tool to identify “high-profile engagement opportunities and a refined view of influential @mentions and follows”.

As far as videos are concerned, Twitter will now allow users to post longer videos of 140 seconds as against the 30 seconds time limit earlier. Twitter has also improved the browsing experience to enable users find videos easily on both Vine and Twitter platforms. Users can now click on video tweet on their timeline to a launch full screen mode with more video tweets appearing below.

CEO Jack Dorsey said “we're investing heavily in videos and creators. We want to be the best place for creators and influencers to build an audience and make it easier for creators to make money on Twitter, and soon Vine."

Twitter further said “with video Tweets increasing by over 50 percent since the beginning of 2016, Twitter's new video products will make it easier, and soon more profitable, for creators to make videos and for fans to discover and share them”.

Social media services companies have started to go full throttle with video viewing. Online video is the most lucrative component of digital advertising. As video ads generate more revenues than their photo and text based counterparts, companies are trying to incorporate more and more video oriented content to bring in more ad dollars. Moreover, it is the “live” feature that is emerging as a terrific opportunity. 

As per an e-marketer report, U.S online ad spending will be to the tune of $9.8 billion in 2016, up 22.7% year over year, and will reach a staggering $16.7 billion by 2020.

Not just Twitter, Facebook (FB - Free Report) is also ramping up its video content efforts. Recently, as per The Wall Street Journal report, the social media service has signed nearly 140 deals worth $50 million with several media firms and celebrities to churn out live video content for its Live platform.

Among media firms, Facebook’s deal with BuzzFeed for $3.05 million is the biggest. There are as many as 17 deals worth over $1 million including deals with The New York Times and CNN for $3.03 million and $2.5 million, respectively. Facebook has also brought on board several celebrities like actor Kevin Hart, Chef Gordon Ramsay and Indian American author Deepak Chopra.

At present, Twitter carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked stocks include NetEase, Inc. (NTES - Free Report) and CommVault Systems, Inc. (CVLT - Free Report) . Both carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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