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Facebook Inc (FB) Tests Video Download Feature For Offline Viewing

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)

To improve the video experience in the developing countries like India, Facebook Inc  is working on a new video downloading feature. According to a report published on TechCrunch, the social networking site will test a new video download option next week.

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)

Video Downloading Option

Starting July 11, the social networking company will allow a small number of users in India to download videos over Wi-Fi so they can watch them later online or offline.

Citing an email from Facebook to publishers about this service, TechCrunch reported that users will be allowed to download videos posted by other users on their personal profiles or by brands posted on their Facebook Pages.

This move to designed to allow people in countries with slow Internet connections to watch videos posted on their Facebook profiles.

“In markets like India, mobile data and connectivity are limited, which can leave people with poor video experiences or no streaming ability at all. We want to make the video experience on Facebook great for people in all parts of the world,” the social networking giant wrote in the email that was published by TechCrunch.

In order to deal with piracy, Facebook will store the videos within its app. This will prevent users from distributing the videos without permission. Additionally, publishers including media outlets will have the option to opt out of the feature through their Facebook Page’s settings, Fortune reported.

Facebook Setbacks in India

Last year, Facebook Inc  announced the Free Basics that offers no-cost access to 38 websites, including Facebook and its Messenger service, Bing Search, Dictionary.com, BBC News, Reuters Market Lite for crop and farming information, and local jobs and news sites.

In February 2016, the Free Basics program was banned by regulators in India based on “Prohibition of Discriminatory Tariffs for Data Services Regulations”.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that the ruling by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India to put a ban on its free data services was disappointing for the mission of connecting people, PC World reported.

In addition, a major setback after a number of technology and media companies walked away from the ambitious Internet.org project. Proponents of the ambitious project argue that the social giant is violating the tenets of net neutrality that it swore to protect back at home.

The entry of the social networking company into India’s internet landscape was met with jubilation in some parts of the country that had never experienced internet services for educational purposes. However, a debate is already raging on whether the service goes against the principle of net neutrality that calls for all content online to be treated equally.

Zuckerberg, on a posting in his Facebook account has defended the social networks practice in India affirming that the company is committed to the principles of net neutrality. Zuckerberg affirms that Internet.org main aim is to bring more people online, an objective that can only be achieved by offering some services for free. The executive is also quick to point out that it is better to have some access rather than having none at all.

In related news, Laura Martin, analyst at Needham & Co., warned that Facebook could see monetization hurt overseas after Brexit. “For our Internet names, Brexit adds risk and uncertainty to their revenue growth rates, profit projections & valuation multiples,” writes Martin in a note.

“Of Facebook’s 1B daily users, only 200mm are in the US. Brexit adds risk to monetization fundamentals outside the US, especially when translating those revenue streams into a strengthening US dollar. Valuation multiple risk: Because FB trades at 12x 2016E revenue, as revenue estimates fall owing to European demand slowing OR currency translation issues, this has a heightened negative impact on FB’s valuation.”

Shares of Facebook Inc  were up 2.37% during the pre-market trading.

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