YouTube is finally starting to add some real social features

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There are many who believe that YouTube could’ve become one of the largest social networks on the planet if the people who run it had played their cards right, but they didn’t. The only real social features that YouTube has are its Google Plus integration, which is universally loathed, and its video comment sections, which are the digital equivalent of cancer. Now, more than a decade after it was founded, it looks like the people who run YouTube are finally starting to add some serious social features, the first of which will be a built-in instant messaging and video sharing feature.

Rolling out to a very limited amount of users, YouTube is testing a messaging and sharing feature from directly within the YouTube app on Android. With this feature, called Native Sharing, users can share YouTube videos to other YouTube users, without the need of leaving the app itself. For example, if you have a friend who you share YouTube videos with constantly, you both can start a thread to share videos in, as well as discuss them, all inside of the YouTube app. This feature will be housed inside of a new tab, located in the YouTube app. It will sit directly between your subscriptions and profile tab on the home page. If you have a group of friends you want to share videos and commentary with, you can add multiple individuals to a single thread. The sharing aspect is handled the same exact way it is shared normally, with a popup window sliding in from the bottom of your screen. Once you have the contact chosen, hit send, and away it goes into your thread. As previously stated, this feature is available to a small group of YouTube users, but if you happen to be selected, you can actually invite friends to partake in Native Sharing with you. This should help increase the number of users quite rapidly. To invite friends, simply begin a new thread with their Google account selected.

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