Facebook on Wednesday launched a new feature called Watch Party to all Facebook Groups that allows members to watch videos on the platform together in real time, and comment. Once a Watch Party is started, participants can watch videos, live or recorded, and interact with one another around them in the same moment.
“We’ve been focused on building new ways to bring people together around video, create connections, and ignite conversations; Watch Party is the next step in bringing this vision to life,” Erin Connolly, Product Manager at Facebook writes in a press statement.
The Watch Party feature as reported by the company will not be limited to only groups since the company plans to roll out the feature to pages, which generally refer to profiles of public figures and other organisations – as well.
“We are now starting to test the ability for people to start Watch Parties with friends outside of groups, too, and we’ll explore Watch Parties for Pages in the future. We believe that if people can start a Watch Party directly from their profile or from a video they’re watching, the experience of watching video on Facebook can become even more fun and social,” writes Erin.
To utilize this new Watch Party feature, members of any group need to search a video on the platform and invite others to join them. A chat window then opens up for the members to have a discussion on the video as it plays.
To make the feature more appealing, the Menlo Park-based social networking firm also added two new features; a 1. co-hosting – allows the host of the Watch Party designate other co-hosts who can add videos and keep the party going, and 2. crowdsourcing – that allows group members to suggest videos for the host to add to the Watch Party. The added two features according to multiple online reports were not available during the Watch Party test phase.
Facebook in the statement didn’t comment/mention whether the feature would be made available for regular profiles as well.