Facebook Enables News Feed Videos to Display on Televisions

The new iOS app gives the social network a new dimension for advertising—a larger-scale venue for generating ad revenue.

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Facebook is now enabling users to show on their television monitors live and previously recorded personal videos posted on their news feeds, similar to the way Google and Apple allow streaming video clips using Google's Chromecast and Cast devices and Apple TV and AirPlay devices.

Facebook users now can cast videos to a TV from a browser or their iOS smartphones or tablets as they already do to an Apple TV or any other AirPlay-enabled device, as well as the Chromecast and Google Cast-enabled devices.

The new iOS app, announced Oct. 13, gives the social network a new dimension for advertising—a larger-scale venue for generating ad revenue. Users can expect to see pre-roll ads connected to their videos at some point.

Facebook is expecting that the larger screens, higher resolution and increased viewing time for users and their viewers ostensibly to provide an attractive environment for advertisers.

The Android version of the app is expected to become available soon, Facebook said. Whatever version someone uses, it's pretty easy to deploy: Simply find a video in the feed on your phone, tablet or desktop, touch the TV button in the top right, then select the device you want to use for the stream. In a few seconds the video will be playing on the TV.

Facebook Live videos will include real-time reactions and comments that can be streamed across the screen. Users can also type in their reactions on the app while watching the video on their TV.

User can scroll through the feed and continue using Facebook while the video streams. That puts Facebook on two screens for the user, a strategy advertisers certainly will favor.

Facebook started testing streaming video to televisions from Android five months ago and iOS in August.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 15 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...