Facebook’s aggressive pursuit of video continues unabated, as the company is now allowing users to upload video replies in the form of comments on a post.
Updated on 06-09-2016 by Saqib Shah: Added details on the launch and creation of Facebook video comments.
According to Facebook product engineer Bob Baldwin, video comments are supported on desktop web, iOS, and Android. Consequently, you can use the new visual media option to interact with people and pages, as well as within groups and events. The update will likely result in a lot more data being cramped on to Facebook’s servers, but that’s the social network’s concern not yours — so get uploading.
To post a video response on Facebook, users must tap the camera icon in the comment box beneath a post (as you would if you wanted to post a pic), which will then connect to your smartphone’s camera library, allowing you to share a prerecorded clip.
The new option expands the multimedia features already available within the comments section, including the ability to post images, links, Facebook stickers, and emoji.
Baldwin claims the video comments functionality was created within the span of a day, during Facebook’s 50th Hackathon earlier this year. He adds that the hackers that worked on the new feature included individuals who had previously built multimedia options into posts, and had contributed to the expansion of Facebook Live.
“To add support across interfaces and within two heavy traffic services, like comments and videos …[would] be a challenge in a month, let alone a single day,” writes Baldwin.
Although Snapchat comparisons get thrown about a lot in regards to Facebook, the feature undoubtedly brings it closer to the visual messaging app, which is primarily built upon image and video exchanges.
Facebook will also be hoping that it encourages more people to share videos, making them more comfortable with the medium as a form of communication. This in turn could encourage users to adopt Facebook Live, and begin streaming more frequently.