YouTube is testing a new feature called “Playables” that will allow users to play simple games directly on the YouTube app, both on desktop and mobile devices. The games will appear alongside other content on the home feed, and are currently being tested with a limited number of users.
The Playables feature is part of YouTube’s efforts to expand into the gaming market. The company has been experimenting with in-app games for several months, and the Playables feature is the first step towards a more comprehensive gaming offering.
The games that will be available in the Playables section are not yet known, but one of the rumoured titles is Stack Bounce, a simple tap-and-play game. It is possible that YouTube will partner with other game developers to bring more games to the platform.
The Playables feature could be a major boost for YouTube’s gaming content. It could also help to attract new users to the platform. If successful, the Playables feature could position YouTube as a major player in the mobile gaming market.
Gaming is already a major part of the YouTube experience. In 2022, gaming content generated over 4 billion hours of watch time on the platform. This makes it a natural fit for YouTube to expand into direct game access.
However, the success of in-stream games has been mixed. Netflix’s move into mobile gaming has not been met with a lot of enthusiasm, with only around 1% of its users engaging with its game offerings. However, the company has since re-focused its gaming push to create more games based on popular Netflix shows, which could hold more appeal.
It remains to be seen whether users actually want to play games within a primarily video app. However, if YouTube can offer the right games, it could increase time spent on the platform and provide another avenue for revenue through sponsorships, ad placement, and add-ons.
YouTube is launching a small-scale test of its Playables feature to begin with. This will allow the company to gauge user interest and make necessary adjustments before rolling out the feature to a wider audience.
If successful, the Playables feature could be a major boost for YouTube’s gaming content. It could also help to attract new users to the platform. Only time will tell whether YouTube can make its move into gaming a success.