Netflix, Amazon, YouTube, and Hulu might have some new competition soon. Facebook’s push into video has mostly been relegated to the news feed, but a Wall Street Journal report suggests that could be changing soon. Sources tell the paper that Facebook is working on an all-video app for set-top boxes and interfaces.
The report also indicates that Facebook will make the leap from hosting the usual user-generated content — your vacation videos — to including professional, television-like productions. That would mean we’d get Facebook originals in the same vein as Netflix originals, which could be viewed easily though the app in development.
The reason? Ads! By far the best line in the WSJ report is “the social-media giant said last November that its main source of revenue, the news feed, was running out of room for more ads,” which is a pretty apt description of the current state of Facebook. With video ads bringing in more money than any other kind on average, Facebook wants to use this video app and original content to create a brand new stream of revenue.
Given Facebook’s unrivaled global reach, that’s potentially bad news for everyone else in video. It also positions Facebook as a possible television replacement in and of itself, featuring news, entertainment, and anything else they can get their hands on. I’ll let you make of that what you will.