Social networking giant Facebook is believed to be readying a serious, in-house competitor to TikTok and for many reasons. Last week, Facebook launched its new experimental app division called NPE, short for 'New Product Experimentation.' Now, Facebook has hired former Vine GM Jason Toff who is leaving Google to join the NPE team at Facebook as a product management director.
"Now that we've moved to CA, I suppose it's a good time to share what I'm up to next! In two weeks, I'll be joining Facebook as a PM Director starting up a new initiative under the recently formed NPE team," said Jason Toff.
(Jason Toff / Instagram)
One of the main reasons behind widespread speculation about Facebook's potential plan to launch a competitor to TikTok has to be Jason Toff's hiring. Toff is better known for his notable work at Vine, a short-form video app that was acquired by Twitter in 2012, as head of product and later general manager. Toff's experience also includes his stint at Google since 2016. Most recently, Toff worked at Area 120 - Google's own workshop for experimental products.
Over the years, Facebook has launched and shut down so many apps out there. So how does the NPE team differ from Facebook's current efforts? Facebook has plans to launch new consumer-focused apps that will quickly take shape based on users' feedback. Facebook may also kill these apps sooner if consumers find them useless. NPE Team wants to develop apps that offer "new experiences for building community."
"I can't talk project specifics but can share that I'll be HIRING. I'm looking to assemble a diverse and mighty 2-pizza dream team full of creative can-doers, so if you're a UX designer or engineer (or both) and thrive in zero-to-one environments, HMU!" Toff added.
The competition between Facebook and TikTok appears to have intensified given TikTok's unparalleled growth over the last few months. According to the recent report from a market intelligence firm Sensor Tower, TikTok is the second most installed social media app worldwide during Q2 2019, followed by Instagram.
Numerous studies have also shown in the past that youngsters have been fleeing Facebook in favour of Instagram, Snapchat and now TikTok.