YouTube Go Beta Now Available in India
Alphabet Inc’s Google announced that a public YouTube Go beta is now available for users to try out in India. Which is specifically focused on offering an improved experience in areas with poor connectivity.
A beta version of the app has been released in the Google Play Store in India, and will be released in other emerging markets later, company executives said in an interview.
Silicon Valley has long regarded India, with its population of 1.3 billion people and poor connectivity, as a prime place to test products for emerging markets.
YouTube executives said they sought to build a product for Indian users from the ground up rather than releasing a slimmed-down version of their primary app.
“As we talked to people in the market, they didn’t want something that felt like a stripped down version of YouTube – they wanted the full experience,” said John Harding, vice president of engineering at YouTube.
Reliance Jio‘s entry has boosted video consumption in India, analyst Neil Shah of Counterpoint Technology Market Research questioned whether YouTube Go would remain popular as cheap data plans become more prevalent.
“The only future I see for YouTube Go is for feature phones or basic phones,” he wrote in an email.
But with 180 million mobile users in India and mobile watch time climbing 400 percent year over year, YouTube has strong momentum in India, Jay Akkad, a product lead at YouTube, said.