Facebook Develops New Talent Show Feature

Facebook’s plan to take on Musical.ly may involve more than just its own take on a lip syncing feature.

They’re also working on “Talent Show,” which would allow users to compete by singing songs then submitting their audition.

The feature isn’t live, but was rather an uncover in the Facebook’s code by Jane Wong.

Wong has a history of uncovering yet-to-launch features or those still in testing through the use of reverse engineering tactics.

She’s spots things like Instagram’s first time-well-spent feature, Lyft’s bike program, and Instagram’s new ways of displaying IGTV videos.

In the case of “Talent Show,” Wong discovers an interface that allows users to pick songs, and then start recording themselves singing the track.

The app’s code also makes references to the feature as “Talent Show” and includes mentions of elements like “audition” and “stage.” The auditions load as videos, Wong notes.

How Is Facebook Benefiting From The Talent Show Feature?!

The development would offer Facebook another way to take advantage of its more recently acquired music licensing rights.

The company, starting last year, began forging deals with all the record labels – including the majors like Universal, Sony, and Warner, and several others, as well as the indies.

The deals mean Facebook won’t have to take down users’ videos with copyrighted music playing in the background, for starters. But the company also said it planned to leverage its rights to develop new “music-based” products going forward.

One of those is Lip Sync Live, an almost direct copy of the popular tween-and-teen lip syncing app Musical.ly, which today has 200+ million registered users and 60 million actives.

Like Musical.ly, Lip Sync Live – which is still in testing – a way to broadcast your lip sync recordings to friends.

Talent Show (assuming the code analysis is on point) seems to take a different angle.

Instead of lip syncing for fun, people are actually singing and competing. It’s similar to the newly launched app FameGame.

However, Wong notes that the feature may be restricted to Facebook Pages, similar to Facebook’s new trivia game show feature.

So, it may offer those partners who’re using Facebook to build out games on their own pages.

Also, Talent Show sources the music via the new Rights Manager, used by record labels to track copyrighted tracks’ usage on Facebook.

Over the years, Facebook has taken aim at any other social app that gathers a following and then reproduces its own version of the app’s key draw – as it did with Stories, Snapchat’s biggest differentiator.

It’s no surprise, then, that it now has Musical.ly in its sights, with regard to lip syncing.

And with the Talent Show feature, it may challenge YouTube as the place where new talent can be discovered, too.