YouTube closes gaming app, shifts content to main platform

YouTube will shut down its gaming app as it creates a new gaming destination for fans on its platform. The new YouTube Gaming destination will allow users to view personalised game-related content as well as discover new content.

Users will be able to watch "top" live games and the latest gaming videos from their subscriptions. This includes gaming content from tens of thousands of different game pages such as trending videos, livestreams and other games from the same publisher or developer. The YouTube Gaming app will close in March 2019 as it moves to the main application. It was first launched in 2015 as a standalone application and a hub for users to watch video-game related content.

In a blog post, Christina Chen, director of product management at YouTube said that although there was a "strong and vibrant" audience on the YouTube Gaming app, the main platform itself has more than 200 million users surfing on a daily basis to engage with games and creators, watching over 50 billion hours of gaming content in the last 12 months alone.

In addition, Chen also added that YouTube will highlight gaming creators that are “On The Rise” on the gaming destination and in trending. Launching first in the US, this feature will continue to roll out to more countries in the future.

"We’re committed to helping gaming creators succeed and look forward to seeing how you all continue to shape the future of gaming," Chen said.

Most recently, YouTube shared on its Creator Insider channel that YouTube partner program channels will now be able to switch on its non-skippable ads function. In the past it was available to only a “select few”, but that is about to change about a week from now.

According to YouTube, this will allow creators to have “more money” as advertisers generally prefer to pay for non-skippable ads and the creators will be notified in their dashboards.  For content that is already being monetised, YouTube will also make available the non-skippable ads. Earlier this year, YouTube had set the maximum video length at 15-20 seconds for non-skippable ads, depending on the viewer’s location.

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