YouTube Gets Mobile Redesign, “Diamond” View Buttons & Courts Creators

Danny Sullivan on
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  • YouTube is getting a new look on mobile, new “diamond” playback buttons for super-popular creators, said more content is being uploaded than ever before and shrugged off competition worries, in a keynote talk by YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki today.

    Wojcicki was speaking at the Vidcon event in Anaheim, California today, where thousands of video content creators and fans have come together for the sixth annual year.

    Beating The Competition

    More about the announcements and stats are below, all of which came out of the formal part of Wojcicki’s keynote. But after her talk, she was interviewed by Shahrzad Rafati, founder and CEO of BroadbandTV.

    Rafati asked about YouTube creators that are wooed by or attracted to other platforms and traditional video outlets.

    Wojcicki admitted that “it’s a competitive space” but said that YouTube wins by meeting the twin goals of helping creators build audience and revenue.

    “Our success is judged by those things. As more [competitors] enter the space, creators will try different things, but they’ll come back to the place that generates the most success for them.”

    That place being YouTube, in her view, of course. She also said that when creators expand off the YouTube platform into thing like books or TV, that can be complementary rather than pulling away from YouTube.

    Still, when YouTube creators get interesting offers, she’s wanting to find ways like the new YouTube original programming effort to expand the “art form” of YouTube.

    “I’m looking at that [offers that creators get] and thinking why can we do X, Y and Z” with them,” Wojcicki said.

    New Mobile Design

    During her talk, Wojcicki announced YouTube has gained a new look available now to those using its Android app, accessing the site through a mobile web browser and promises the iOS app will be updated soon.

    The new look features three tabs: Home, for browsing YouTube generally; Subscriptions, for easily viewing content from channels you’re subscribed to and Account, for keeping up with your own YouTube creation and viewing activity.

    YouTube shares more about the new look in a blog post it now has up.

    Diamond Playback Button

    At the close of the session, YouTube also announced a new “diamond” playback button that creators with more than 10 million subscribers will get, joining the preexisting gold button for those with 1 million subscribers and silver for those with 100,000.

    About 35 accounts are currently eligible for the new buttons, and several of them were presented with real-world version in an awards ceremony following the keynote.

    Praising Creators, The “Reinventors Of Television”

    Much of Wojcicki’s talk was spent praising YouTube creators, who she described helped YouTube reinvent television and how people view video content. She opened with this theme and closed with it:

    I want to leave you all with one final message: YouTube succeeds only if you, our creators, succeed. You’re the reason that we’re all here today; you’re the reason that VidCon exists in the first place. All of you have invested in building your channels, building your businesses, listening viewer feedback, pored over your analytics and as a result, made great content and built strong communities.

    You’re a massive part of the reinvention of television. You’re the stars of today. So YouTube’s strategy will always be the same: invest in you, our creators. I’m proud of what we’ve achieved over the past ten years. But I’m even more excited about our future together.

    By the way, the quote above was emailed from Google along with other below. I’ve gone with that rather than from my live blog the written quotes captured much more than I could type.

    Wojcicki also noted that YouTube is allowing much more diversity in content to reflect the real world:

    We’re finally in an era where diversity on the screen reflects the diversity of our society.

    YouTube Stats

    Wojcicki shared a number of stats during her talk. The rundown:

    YouTube watch time is now up over 60% year over year, the fastest growth rate seen in two years.

    Users who begin at the YouTube home page — which YouTube likens to how someone might turn on a TV — is up three times over last year.

    More than 400 hours of content is now uploaded every minute to YouTube.

    People watching YouTube per day is up 40% since last year, as measured comparing March 2014 to March 2015.

    More than half of YouTube’s views come from mobile devices.

    More than half of YouTube’s watch time happens on mobile devices.

    YouTube — overall and on mobile-only — reaches more more 18-34 and 18-49 year-olds than any US cable network.

    YouTube partner revenue is up 50% compared to last year.

    The number of channels earning six figures per year is up 50%. YouTube didn’t give the actual number of channels earning this way, however.

    The top 100 channels in Google Preferred saw an over 70% increase in revenue over last year versus regular partners, which had a 50% rise.

    The number of advertisers running video ads is up more than 40% over last year.

    The top 100 advertisers (those with highest media spend on video ads) spending 60% more than last year.

    Live Blog

    Below is our live blog:

    About The Author

    Danny Sullivan
    Danny Sullivan was a journalist and analyst who covered the digital and search marketing space from 1996 through 2017. He was also a cofounder of Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land, Marketing Land, MarTech Today and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo and MarTech events. He retired from journalism and Third Door Media in June 2017. You can learn more about him on his personal site & blog He can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.