Facebook is finally making the step into premium video after announcing a new ‘Watch’ tab for its mobile apps.
The new tab will feature professionally-produced short-form content from a variety of partners, including A&E, Hearst, MLB, Time Inc., and others.
As part of that roll-out, Facebook will also make Watch available on desktop as well as via its connected TV apps, claim Variety.
Some of the shows will be live, including MLB’s live broadcast of a baseball game every Friday night. And Facebook will introduce a new page type for shows to make it easier to browse and discover episodic content.
However, Watch will initially only be available to a limited number of users in the US as part of a test before Facebook eventually launches it for everyone.
Facebook executives have repeatedly talked about seeding their video ambitions with direct investments in content over the past couple of months, and the company’s CFO David Wehner said during a recent earnings call that these investments will show up in Facebook’s balance sheets toward the end of the year. “Video will continue to be a big focus and area of investment for us,” he said.