Thursday, 23 April 2015

10 years since the first YouTube video was uploaded

On Valentines Day 2005, three former PayPal employees set about creating a new website called YouTube. The website allowed both individuals and corporations alike to upload, view, and share videos of different formats whether they be vlogs, shorts, TV clips or music videos. The first YouTube video, called 'Me at the zoo' was uploaded on April 23rd 2005 and it is still available to watch today:

YouTube became so popular, Google purchased it for $1.65 billion in 2006 and by 2007 it was estimated that YouTube consumed as much bandwidth as the entire Internet did in 2000!

YouTube in 2005
10 years on, YouTube is rated the 4th most visited website in the US and UK. They has recently released an app exclusively for children called 'YouTube Kids', the video player is compatible with 4K 3D video, everyone from politicians and celebrities to lonely teenagers living in back-bedrooms upload a total of 300 hours of content to YouTube every minute, and YouTube Music Key (launched late 2014) allows users use YouTube like a music streaming service. It hasn't been a completely smooth journey to where it is today though. YouTube is banned in multiple countries for both political and logistical reasons, controversial content uploaded by users have made them subject to numerous government inquiries, and similar services such as Vimeo have launched offering content creators appealing alternatives.

So can YouTube flourish for another 10 years? I hope so. Unlike some other Google products, YouTube seems to always be getting new features and design upgrades. Also many teens would struggle to survive without the a breed of celebrity called 'YouTubers' (such as Caset Neistat, Zoella and Syndicate). The developers of YouTube also have a good sense of humor which the internet appreciates.

However, Facebook has been working hard on their video player over the past few months and they were happy to report today that videos on their website are getting over 4 billion daily views. This was the number YouTube was at only 3 years ago. However, I predict Facebook still has a long way to go until it reaches YouTube's level of success with compelling content.

The world wouldn't be the place it is today without YouTube. It is a valuable service for so many storytellers, creators, musicians, celebrities, politicians and businesses around the world and it is the number one place for online videos - for now anyway.