YouTube Gains New Features To The Delight Of Viewers But Should Creators Be Worried?

youtube hothardware
Following the recently unveiling of hundreds of TV series to stream for free, YouTube is introducing some new features that will delight viewers, but may not be welcomed by content creators on the streaming platform. One feature will allow viewers to easily see the most-watched parts of any video by highlighting them in a semi-translucent graph above the video's progress bar.

The new features were announced on the official YouTube community website on May 19th. YouTube said that it wants to make it easier for people to find content they are most interested in watching, along with adding some other handy features that include auto-generated video chapters and Single Loop.

The main feature being added is a graph that will allow viewers to be able to tell which parts of a video are the most replayed by others. As someone views a video, they will be able to see a graph showing the most frequently replayed parts. Wherever there is a peak in the graph, that part of the video has been replayed often. This will allow users to quickly find and watch the moments that others presumably found the most interesting. The feature is available on both mobile and desktop now.

youtube skip
Image Courtesy of Google/YouTube

While viewers may find having a graph that shows the most replayed moments in a video a plus, content creators may have second thoughts about it. Viewer retention is a critical metric for YouTube's algorithm. The longer a viewer watches a video, the more it is "valued" by the algorithm. If viewers use the new feature to simply "hit the highlights", then their watch time may decrease. However, YouTube hopes that it will create return visits to those videos as people watch those moments over and over, and in turn generate more watch time.

Video chapters is a feature that is probably familiar to some, as it launched in May of 2020. The feature breaks videos up into sections, allowing users to jump to a specific section of a video. The feature has already been added to 20 million videos, according to YouTube, and can now be auto-generated and viewed across more devices. It is suggested that creators consider adding chapters to their videos, as data suggests the average watch time of these videos is higher.

Single Loop will enable the ability to place a video on loop for as long as a viewer wants. If you are on PC, you will simply right click on the video player and select the "Loop" function. If you are on mobile, you will tap on "More" in the video player and then tap on "Single Loop" to enable the video loop function.

What are your thoughts on the addition of a graph that will highlight the most replayed parts of a video? Do you think it will have a negative impact on content creators, or will it actually increase watch time? Let us know down in the comments.