Tik Tok is the latest social network sensation app.
If you been missing Vine then you will be excited about Tik Tok. If you like music, you will like Tik Tok. If you like short form videos, you will like Tik Tok. If you are over 30, you probably won’t like Tik Tok for doing selfies but you still may enjoy watching others being strange or goofy, or singing on the videos.
The Chinese short-form video app has been gaining global momentum. It's been downloaded about 80 million times in the United States, and nearly 800 million times worldwide. according to recent data and that does not include stats from it's home base, China.
Users share short videos of themselves cooking, dancing, lip-syncing or doing regular tasks like brushing their teeth. The videos, which often feature music in the background, can be sped up, slowed down or edited with a filter. Similar to Instagram, users can follow others and "heart" or comment on videos. TikTok videos are also being reposted to other platforms, like Twitter and Instagram.
Social media influencers and celebrities are starting to join. YouTube star Jake Paul, comedian Jimmy Fallon and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk all have accounts. TikTok launched in 2016 but kind of reinvented itself and morphed. It now has been downloaded more than Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and YouTube and that has social media experts paying attention as well as advertisers.
So, what is the history behind this hot new app? In August, ByteDance, the Chinese internet company behind the app, shut down Musical.ly. this was a short-form video app that it acquired in November 2017. Then, they merged it with TikTok. Since then, it's been gaining popularity in the United States. ByteDance calls itself an artificial intelligence company, and it's known in China for its popular news app Jinri Toutiao, or "Today's Headlines," which launched in 2012.
The TikTok app is a way for ByteDance to expand into the US market and target younger users. In general, Chinese social media apps have had trouble attracting users from outside their country. TikTok is attracting attention from brands, too. It recently created a marketing agreement with fashion brand Guess on a denim campaign to target Millennials and Generation Z on the platform in September.
Facebook has taken notice of TikTok's rising popularity, and even launched a competitor app called Lasso earlier this month. The app lets users create and share short videos with music and camera effects.
Not all viral apps end up successful and TikTok's fate is still to be determined. With young people who use apps like Tik Tok everyone is on the bandwagon one minute and off the next. Boredom sets in quickly with tweens and 20 somethings who are the main users of Tik Tok.
Tags: #social media, #video, #apps, #mobility, #smart phones, #tik tok