For the most part, watching YouTube videos on your mobile device is mostly a solitary experience. However, what if there was an app that lets you view a “YouTube” video with your friends at the same time? If such an app appeal to you, then you might be interested in what UpTime has to offer.
Created by Google’s internal incubator Area 120, UpTime is an iOS app that turns your regular YouTube binge sessions into a more social affair. This “social video experience” lets you browse through YouTube for videos that can then be shared and watched simultaneously with other people over the app. Viewers of a video are represented as circles that hover above the square border of the video.
To make the group watch experience more interactive, UpTime allows viewers to chat with each other while the video is running, complete with emojis and reaction faces. On top of that, tapping on the video itself will cause effects to appear that are visible to all those who are currently viewing it.
As is expected from a brand new app, UpTime does feel lacking in terms of features. Some examples includes the inability to record and publish a video onto UpTime, and the lack of an address book feature. UpTime also does not have a private messaging feature, although considering the fact that the developers are experimenting with the concept of open sharing, the absence of this feature may be intentional.
Flaws aside, UpTime is a rather interesting take on the video streaming experience. If you’re someone who likes interacting with strangers, UpTime is an app that’s worth experimenting with.