Social networks are slowly moving towards incorporating pictures and videos instead of text. The fact that Snapchat was a phenomenon is no coincidence. Neither is the fact that Instagram is becoming more popular by the day. Another social network that can brag about its millions of users is Tik Tok. Formally known as Musically, its popularity has grown exponentially thanks to the so-called generation Z. Just taking a quick glance at its users is enough to realize that millions of youngsters dance, sing and apply visual and audio effects to create unique masterpieces that blow away the Tik Tok community. With endless creative possibilities, more than one millennial can become overwhelmed. Shall we take a closer look at this social network?
A brief overview of Tik Tok’s evolution
It could be interesting for you to know that the social network was created and launched by the Chinese company Bytedance. Originally known as “Douyin” in its native country, the app’s name changed later on to Tik Tok when it was released internationally. The app also fused with musical.ly, a strategic move which cost its creators the hefty amount of 1,000 million dollars. They clearly believed in the product enough to take a chance and expand the app around the world.
It was clearly the right move. Today, Tik Tok is incredibly popular in a bunch of different countries. In fact, SensorTower reported that during this year’s first trimester, Tik Tok had more downloads through Google Play than giants like Facebook or Instagram. In other words, during the first three months of 2019, Tik Tok grew 70% more compared to the same time frame in 2018 thanks to its 188 million new users. Plus, the in-app purchases have amassed more than 80 million dollars.
Tik Tok’s controversy in India
Tik Tok owes a huge part of their success to its viral growth in India. Just to give you an idea, 88.6 million new users in 2019’s first trimester were located in that country. Plus, according to Sensor Tower, 99% of the downloads were done using Androids. When the Indian government realized what was going on, they requested that Google and Apple blocked the app’s distribution inside their country. Apparently, the reason behind this dramatic request was the possible inducement of pornography of some of the videos posted in the platform.
This restriction caused major damage to Bytedance. According to Reuters, the Chinese company lost around half a million dollars during India’s veto. It was even suspected that more than 250 jobs would be lost due to income loss. Nevertheless, Tik Tok claimed that a very small percentage of their videos are rejected due to inappropriate content. In fact, a few days later, the Indian Ministry of Information Technology and Electronics requested the reinstatement of the app in the before-mentioned distribution channels.
An algorithm that shows you videos randomly
As soon as you enter Tik Tok, you’ll realize that this social network was created so you can interact with others from the get-go. You’ll see the videos appear vertically on the main screen, even if you haven’t followed any particular user. Just keep in mind that almost all of the videos include the trendiest music.
Don’t worry if you don’t recognize anyone or if you don’t understand a thing that’s happening. The users dare each other to say words in different languages, to sing or dance a specific song, etc. The social network includes an algorithm that’ll randomly show you videos if you’re outside the Following tab. Even if you’re not following a single user, you can scroll down and see infinite posts. Now, do you understand why people can’t stop watching Tik Tok videos?
Simplicity is another key factor
Gesture controls also help boys and girls use Tik Tok easily. All you have to do is scroll downwards to go on to the next video and slide to the right if you want to access a specific profile. You can also access the Discover tab to access videos using popular hashtags without having to type them. If you want to share your profile, you can easily do so with a custom “Tikcode”. Basically, anyone can understand all the options available from the time they’re 6 years old.
Without a doubt, Tik Tok’s main selling point is the potential of its video editing tools. Back in the day, we were amazed by the visual effects that Snapchat offered. Later on, the Instagram Stories stole the show. But now, users are absolutely in awe with the possibilities that this app offers its Tiktokers. The developers have definitely done their homework and created the right ingredients to get their target audience hooked. Eye-catching themed filters and special events, cropping tools, timelines with several recordings and the latest music which is updated daily. Who can ask for more?
Hearts that create popularity
Hearts are the object of desire for the vast amount of Tik Tok users. These content creating users compete against each other to create and upload the most unique videos and get the most likes from the community. The social network’s interface was specifically designed so you can check out any account’s popularity level in a matter of seconds. On the right side of each post, you’ll see the number of hearts and comments it’s received.
The Tik Tok algorithm keeps evolving in order to award popularity in a short amount of time. This fact can be easily checked by uploading a video that includes one of the many popular hashtags. Even if your account doesn’t include a single follower, you’ll have hundreds of views and a few hearts and comments in a matter of seconds. This is a clear indicator of the overwhelming number of active users that are part of this community.
An unstoppable progression
It’s clear to see that Tik Tok’s users will keep growing exponentially. We may even dare to say that this isn’t just a viral app that’ll be out of people’s minds in a few months. Don’t forget that Vine’s developers, which was a similar app, decided not to continue working on the project despite their success. This time, Bytdance’s app is here to stay and beat all their competitors. It looks like their ultimate goal is to reach as many users as possible which might not be too difficult thanks to the options and versatility they offer.