Short video platform Kuaishou tests long video feature, intensifying Douyin rivalry

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Short video app Kuaishou is testing longer videos on its platform amid a broader push to ramp up user engagement by granting a small percentage of users access to upload videos between 57 seconds and 10 minutes, media outlet 36Kr reported.

Why it matters: As Kuaishou and its rival, Bytedance-owned Douyin, grow bigger, they are competing for increasingly overlapping audiences. Kuaishou’s long video feature places it more directly in competition with Douyin, which started testing a long video feature in June.

  • The rate of overlapping users on both Douyin and Kuaishou rose to 46.5% in May from 44.8% in April, according to 36kr citing a QuestMobile report.
  • Around 70 of the top 100 key opinion leaders, or KOLs, on Kuaishou are also on Douyin, and half of the top 100 KOLs on Douyin are also using Kuaishou, according to Kuaishou’s senior vice president Ma Hongbin.

Details: Kuaishou said that the long video functionality is still being tested and is currently available only to certain users. The feature will be available to everyone in the future, but no specific date has been disclosed.

  • Kuaishou previously only allowed upload of videos no longer than 57 seconds.
  • Douyin’s test of the feature allows videos of up to 15 minutes in length.

Context: Kuaishou kicked off in June a push to grow its daily active users (DAU) to 300 million before the Spring Festival holiday next year, which falls in late January. Its DAU was 200 million as of May.

  • The goal was set by co-founders Su Hua and Cheng in an internal letter, in which they expressed dissatisfaction with sluggish employee performance.
  • The company intends to optimize its organizational structure and speed up the product refinement process.
  • On July 16, Kuaishou raised its revenue goal for 2019 by 50%.
  • Bytedance announced in July that the combined DAU of its apps have reached 700 million, with Douyin contributing 320 million.