The rumours have been confirmed. Facebook has announced that they will launch autoplay advertisements on users’ News Feed soon. This feature will be made available to both desktop and mobile versions. For mobile users, the video will be previously downloaded owing to a strong WiFi connection and then be played. The Wall Street Journal being one of the firsts to report it, Facebook went on to say that the company will test this feature on a limited number of pre-determined users to check the autoplay features effectiveness. The first autoplay advertisement to kick-start this initiative will be mini trailers of the upcoming film Divergent
, starring Kate Winslet.
Facebook decided to integrate the same framework as Instagram when it came to installing the autoplay feature. What this essentially means is that when a user logs in to their respective Facebook account, the advertisements will play without the user pressing on the play button. The default volume will be on mute unless the user wants to hear the advertisement. One of the primary reasons for targeting a smaller audience as a trial run is because users are already complaining about any new features that Facebook introduces, including the hashtag and the much debated new timeline modification.
During the launch of this trial, Facebook went on record to say, “A targeted number of people will be able to view the trailer of the upcoming film Divergent in autopplay mode. Instead of getting them to hit play on the video, the trailer will launch itself without any sound, as is its default setting”. Research after this trail launch ended showed an increase of 10% in viewing these advertisements. Facebook found that users tend to view the ads if the user isn’t required to manually click on the play button. Owing to the delight of the advertisers, Facebook has announced that autoplay will soon be made available to all Facebook users. Distressed users fear not! You have a chance to skip these ads by simply scrolling through them.