Saturday, June 10, 2017

Former Hulu exec's app aggregates YouTube unboxing vids

Former Hulu exec's app aggregates YouTube unboxing vids: unboxing-ed.jpg

There's something about unboxing videos that's attracted a ton of attention in recent years, making them wildly popular on YouTube and other platforms. Now, ex-Hulu and Flipboard CTO Eric Feng is trying to cash in on the masses' obsession with "unboxing porn." His new startup called "Packagd" has launched Unboxed: an app that aggregates gadget unboxing videos from partner creators and streams them straight from YouTube, ads included. It's now live on iTunes for iOS devices. While the service won't be making its own content, Feng hired a few famous unboxing YouTubers, such as Austin Evans and Kevin the Tech Ninja, to produce six hours of live programming per day.

These curators will pick a video, either their own or another YouTuber's, and host a live chat with users as they play it. The whole experience is supposed to mimic the effect of watching a home TV shopping channel and calling in, because that's exactly what Feng hopes to achieve. He wants the service to become the online version of QVC or the Home Shopping Network for the new generation.

According to Fast Company, Packagd plans to make money mainly through sponsored videos. Tech giants, for instance, could buy half an hour of airing time to either show their own unboxing video for a new product or to feature other people's while providing live programming in the background. However, Unboxed will also have in-app buy links of the product featured in the video clips, with all revenue going toward the creators in an effort to entice them to join the platform. The app will sell popular products unrelated to the one being unboxed on cam from time to time, as well.

If the model Feng came up with takes off, he plans to expand his business. He has his sights set on cosmetics and toys, two categories outside of tech that also has viewers who enjoy watching their favorite YouTubers take apart new boxes to get to the prize inside.

Source: Fast Company, Unboxed (iTunes)

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