Wattpad evolved from a fiction story sharing website to a multiplatform entertainment company that offers audiobooks and even genre-based storytelling apps.
The Toronto-based company is expanding its offerings yet again with the launch of a video sharing app called Raccoon.
Using the app, storytellers can record 60-second selfie-style videos where they share short real stories. Users can browse trending topics and content themes to connect with other people in the Raccoon community. The app also sends story-sharing prompts and questions with a corresponding hashtag to search for other user replies.
Led by co-founder Ivan Yuen, the platform marks Wattpad’s first foray into non-fiction video storytelling. Yuen called the launch of Raccoon a “critical step forward” for the company in realizing their vision to use storytelling to connect the world.
“As we look to the future of storytelling, it’s clear that video will play an important role – digital video audiences are predicted to reach 2.15 billion this year alone,” he said.
“By providing a platform where people can experiment with new forms of short-form video storytelling, Raccoon creates authentic connections between storytellers and their audiences, and cultivates a safe space for people to tell stories around shared experiences.”
Yuen explained that the app doesn’t have filters or editing capabilities because Raccoon wants to capture the story and storyteller in a raw form.
Raccoon is the latest storytelling product to come out of Wattpad Labs, an innovation lab launched earlier this year. The lab’s first product was Tap by Wattpad, an app that features more than 300,000 original chat-style stories.
The video app is now available for download in Canada and the U.S. on iOS and Android devices.