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Tangi video app from Google’s Area 120: Can this be a TikTok challenger?

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Written by Shruti Dhapola
| New Delhi |

Published: January 31, 2020 3:11:00 pm


Tangi, Tangi Google, Google Tangi app, Google Tangi app, Tangi vs TikTok, Tangi app vs TikTok, What is Tangi Tangi from Google’s Area 120 labs is a short video creation app. Here’s what it does.

Everybody wants to make the next TikTok, even Google. Well they have with a new app called Tangi, though this one comes from Google’s Area 120 team, their lab for experimental projects. While ‘Tangi’ is still in beta phase, and you have to be whitelisted in order to post your videos, the comparisons with TikTok are inevitable. We spent some time with the Tangi app, and here’s what we thought.

Tangi: So what’s different here?

Well, for starters this is more controlled and limited in terms of content, and there are two clear reasons for this. One is of course that the app is new, and Google has worked with a limited number of creators to create video content for them. Two, not everyone can create a video on the Tangi app, though you can reply to some of the videos in the form of text and photos. One has to clear the waitlist in order to get approval to post videos.

So wait, how do you get approval to make videos?

You will discover this when you go to to your profile on the app. Under the section videos, you will see an option to ‘Apply Now.’ Click on that and it takes you to a Google form of sorts, where you have to give in your details, such as name, email, TikTok or Instagram or YouTube or other handle. I’m guessing having a lot of followers on either of these platforms might give you the edge.

Tangi, Tangi Google, Google Tangi app, Google Tangi app, Tangi vs TikTok, Tangi app vs TikTok, What is Tangi Tangi app requires you get pre-approved in order to post videos on the app. 

Oh and Tangi also wants to know ‘why are your videos right for Tangi?’ I must admit I didn’t have a very long or inspiring answer to that question.

Where is Tangi available?

You can go to the Tangi website at tangi.co and check out the videos. And the app is there on iOS. Surprisingly there is no Android app for this.

So what happens after your set up Tangi?

As soon as you open the app, you will see a feed of videos with different kind of content. The top tab has categories mentioned as well, such as Art, Cooking, DIY, Fashion and Beauty, and Lifestyle. I wouldn’t say the content is very accurately slotted. I mean why is there a dog video in the lifestyle category. I would have thought pets would be a clear category since pet videos are clear winners across platforms.

If you want you can choose to set up a profile as well, but as I said before, you can’t create a video. You can simply tap on a video and start watching it. The user interface is very similar to TikTok. You can post a comment to these videos. There’s a Try It feature as well, which lets you post picture comments. I was confused what Try it was and thought I was posting a picture of my dog on my profile, but it was actually a reply to a video. But I did get a reply on the picture I posted so that was good.

Tangi, Tangi Google, Google Tangi app, Google Tangi app, Tangi vs TikTok, Tangi app vs TikTok, What is Tangi The Tangi app and its overall interface. The profile page has three main tabs: Videos, Likes and Try Its. 

There’s a Share option, an option to follow the creator, and a heart video, which means you liked the video. The videos are all maximum 60 seconds long only, so this really takes the definition of ‘snackable’ content quite seriously.

In the profile segment of the app, there’s a Videos, Likes and Try It tab. Videos will show all the videos you have created. The Likes segment shows videos you have liked on the platform. The ‘Try Its’ segment, shows more is coming soon. Google, in the blog post, said they want to see users “try out” some of the New Year’s and Valentine’s Day projects. It is not clear what ‘Try Its’ will offer.

So is Tangi good enough to take on TikTok?

It’s too soon to say given this is an experimental app, and very tightly curated for now. Tangi appears to be targeted more towards the US audience, if one were to go by the kind of content available right now. TikTok is huge in the US as well. But in TikTok in India comes in several languages, has so many options for filters, sound effects, hashtags, trends, etc, that any new app will have a tough chance competing against it.

Right now, Tangi is too experimental and all features need to be activated to see what the app is really capable of offering. Still Google has had many attempts at building its own take on social media before, as we saw previously with the Google Plus, and none have been too successful. Hopefully, Tangi have a better fate.

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Updated: January 31, 2020 — 9:46 am

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