Facebook’s biggest push yet into original video — a standalone video tab outside of the News Feed that was originally slated to launch last month — will reportedly be unveiled in mid-August.
Bloomberg reports that Facebook is asking media partners to turn in pilot episodes right now for the tab, which has been delayed several times. The tab will comprise both short-form content from collaborators like BuzzFeed and Group Nine Media, as well as premium TV-style shows — including the Sundance relationship drama Strangers, a game show called Last State Standing, and the MTV comedy pick-up Loosely Exactly Nicole. However, the high-end series will launch after the short-form slate. (Facebook has also reportedly greenlit projects from Mike Rowe and LaVar Ball).
The tab will comprise both scripted and user-generated content, and could be a huge draw for advertisers given Facebook’s more than 2 billion global users. Bloomberg describes the video tab as more “higher-end” than YouTube — though not as premium as Netflix, HBO, and the like. Facebook sees the first set of long and short-form shows as a way to test the waters, Bloomberg reports, but does not intend to fund programming in the long-term.