Vessel wants to steal your eyes from YouTube, and you can try it for free


There's a new video service in town, and while it might be a small upstart, it's being very aggressive against Google's giant YouTube.

The service, called Vessel, is now accepting sign-ups from anyone via its homepage. Content is free to start with, but the firm's model means that to get early-access to videos before they hit YouTube you'll need to pay a small subscription fee. Once the exclusive window ends, Vessel will show ads on video much like YouTube does, with short pre-roll clips.

Vessel's main attack strategy is grabbing people with popular YouTube channels and getting them to sign up for Vessel's service instead. If those users give Vessel a small window of exclusivity then they get a higher share of the revenue, making the service seem a lot more attractive than YouTube.

The video service was started by Jason Kilar who was, for a while, CEO of Hulu, so the man knows his video. In the US Hulu serves as a major port of call for streaming network TV shows like Family Guy, but also offers original content too.

How does it work?

To get a slice of Vessel's money, users simply agree to put their original content on the service 72 hours before they post it elsewhere. There are no other restrictions.

Already, when you sign up there are some impressive channels posting content. Many of them are YouTubers who are clearly looking to increase revenue, even if only for that minimum period before they cash in on their existing YouTube subscribers.

Kilar claims that video uploaders get around $2-3 (£1.34-£2 GBP, AU$2.53-$3.79) per 1000 views, while partners get around $50 (£33.48 GBP, AU$63.22) for the same number of video views.

There's already an iPhone app, with Android support coming soon.