YouTube Shorts is huge in India, now it’s going after TikTok in the US

Google unit’s short-form video service builds on success in India, where TikTok is banned

When Jonothon Lyons began dressing up as “Buddy the Rat” and filming his antics around New York, he had no idea he was laying the foundation for a massive social media following.

Especially one with viewers primarily in India.

Mr. Lyons posts his videos on YouTube Shorts, joining the creators who have helped the two-year-old short-form video service emerge as a significant rival to TikTok.

Mr. Lyons and other creators say a key driver of that growth is India—a country of more than one billion people, where TikTok is banned. He says nearly 80% of his views come from India.

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