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YouTube Enters The Gaming Space With Playables

The video-sharing platform is currently allowing a select number of users to try out the new feature 

Video-sharing behemoth YouTube has revised its roster of ongoing platform experiments to include the start of its ‘Playables’ trial. The description clarifies that Playables are interactive games that can be directly played on YouTube, using desktop and mobile devices. 

As the test has just started, the Playables feature will not be accessible to every member of the public just yet. The Google-owned company has shared that only a limited number of users will be granted access for the time being.

Users who have been chosen for early access should soon see a new section called ‘Playables’ beside the regular content on the homepage. The testing phase is already underway, so users may have already seen the new feature. 

YouTube wrote in a community post, “We’re starting to test a new experience on YouTube called “Playables”. Playables are games that can be played directly on YouTube on both desktop and mobile devices. If you’re part of this experiment, you’ll see a section on YouTube called “Playables” that will appear alongside other content on the home feed. 

“We’re testing this with a limited number of users to start.  You can view and control your Playables history and saved game progress in YouTube History.” 

Gaming on YouTube 

Back in June, YouTube initially introduced the concept of Playables, which led to employees conducting internal tests of the feature. One of the games that was initially included in these tests was Stack Bounce. 

Google’s initial foray into cloud gaming was marked by Stadia, a platform that many will recall. However, earlier this year, the company abandoned its efforts in that direction. Further reports also pointed out that Google’s sudden interest in game development was possibly linked to a fall in advertising expenditure.

As the Bard AI company prepares to reenter the cloud gaming landscape, it raises questions about the level of success it anticipates. It is worth considering the example of Netflix Games, which, at one stage, had user engagement levels below 1% of its total subscriber base, but is now rapidly growing. 

In addition, Google has not provided specific details about the types of games that users can expect from Playables. A game such as Stack Bounce is unlikely to appeal to a significant portion of the gaming community that already consumes content on the platform.

Written By

Isa Muhammad is a writer and video game journalist covering many aspects of entertainment media including the film industry. He's steadily writing his way to the sharp end of journalism and enjoys staying informed. If he's not reading, playing video games or catching up on his favourite TV series, then he's probably writing about them.

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