Google's TikTok and Instagram Reels rival 'YouTube Shorts' expands to the U.S.

YouTube Axon 10 Pro
YouTube Axon 10 Pro (Image credit: Jason England / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • YouTube's Shorts feature has started rolling out to users in the U.S.
  • Until now, Shorts was limited to users in India.
  • The feature offers a similar vertical short-form video experience as TikTok.

YouTube announced a new feature called Shorts last year, a short-video format similar to TikTok. Nearly six months after its announcement, YouTube has finally started rolling out the feature in beta in the U.S (via XDA Developers).

When YouTube shared its 2021 roadmap last month, it revealed that the Shorts player is now receiving over 3.5 billion daily views. Due to the rising popularity of the feature, the number of Indian channels using Shorts creation tools has more than tripled since December.

YouTube Shorts can be up to 60 seconds long and appear on the homepage Shorts shelf. Shorts are also featured on channel pages by default and can even be found in your subscription feeds.

While YouTube Shorts offers a similar experience to TikTok, it is nowhere near as feature-rich in its current form. Despite all the challenges, TikTok continues to grow in popularity and is forecasted to reach 1.2 billion average monthly active users in 2021.

It is worth noting that Shorts is only being rolled out to select users currently. If the feature doesn't show up on your phone, you can try joining the YouTube beta program from the Play Store.

Google is yet to reveal exactly when the feature will begin rolling out to everyone. There's also no word on feature's global rollout.

Babu Mohan
News Writer