What is Byte?
At a super high level, Byte is a 6-second video version of TikTok (which allows videos up to one minute).
- It is attempting to differentiate itself with a slightly different revenue model than TikTok, but their content is similar. Condensed creativity.
- Do you remember Vine? The popular, 6-second looping video, social media site that was sold to Twitter and then disappeared? Byte is founded by the same guy, who has been working on a Vine replacement since 2018.
we’re bringing back 6-second looping videos and the community that loved them.
you know the drill: upload from your camera roll or use the byte camera to capture stuff. stay under the time limit and get lost in the loop. explore what’s loved by the community, handpicked by our human editors, or just served up at random. there are lots of ways to discover surprising new personalities, voices, and moments.
byte celebrates life, community, and pure creativity.
Company website: https://byte.co/
APP Store rating:
- APPLE: 12+ (profanity, cartoon/fantasy violence, alcohol, tobacco, or drug use, mature themes)
- GOOGLE: Teen (no details)
What do parents need to know about Byte?
Here’s a list of items we try to evaluate with each app we review.
Does Byte have easily accessible inappropriate content?
Since the app is new, there’s not much content. We searched for typical words, including porn, sex, mirror shot, horny, and others. For now, there aren’t hashtags, so content isn’t searchable. But user profiles are, which turned up profiles who use these words in their username. That’s it (see image).
Does Byte have default public settings?
Yes. Currently, there’s no private account option. Anyone can add anyone else to follow. You can block accounts, but you’ll need to monitor who is deciding to follow you.
Does Byte share your location?
No, there is no location sharing.
Does Byte have “live” or “ephemeral” content?
No, users upload short videos. But there isn’t a Snapchat-like disappearing message option.
Does Byte have direct messaging?
No, users cannot DM each other, but comments are allowed on Bytes (6-second videos). The lack of DMs does mitigate some predator risk, but comments in any social networking site (not just Byte), can be predatory.
Does Byte have ads and in-app purchases?
No, but as the app tries to establish a revenue model, these items could enter the scene. This TechCrunch article talks about the various business models being considered. Byte is definitely looking to differentiate itself from existing short-form video content sites like TikTok, Firework, Triller, and Dubsmash by providing easy ways for high-traffic creators to make money.
Does Byte make it easy to report bad content?
Yes. By clicking the 3, horizontal dots (see image), you can “block” or “report” any Byte video.
Does Byte promote anonymity?
No, insomuch as a user is truthful when they create their account. But an account is attached to all comments.
Do Byte’s features facilitate bullying?
Any platform that allows comments is going to eventually have mean people post mean things. Instagram has added a massive amount of intelligence to its app in order to mitigate bullying. Byte just isn’t there yet. If someone is mean in the comments, then they just need to be blocked.
Do Byte’s features facilitate predatory activity?
Given that all accounts are private, there’s no where to really hide from people with exploitive motives.
How does Byte guard privacy?
The bottom line – is Byte safe?
As a fledgling app, its content is growing, which means there’s always going to be inappropriate content. Vine eventually struggled mightily with content moderation. We shall see if Byte follows a similar path. Until then, because it is social media, we would like to see kids wait until at least high school before they open an account because #waitingisloving.
Have you heard of Bark?
Because the app is brand new, no one monitors it yet. But, Bark can send an alert when new apps are downloaded. Plus, they cover plenty of other apps that kids love, including texts, chat, email, YouTube, and 24+ social media platforms for signs of cyberbullying, suicidal ideation, adult content, and more.
Parents and guardians don’t have to read every message — instead, they’ll get alerts only when there’s a potential issue. Sign up today for a free, one-week trial!
*There are affiliate links throughout this post because we’ve tested and trust a small list of parental control solutions. Our work saves you time! If you decide that you agree with us, then we may earn a small commission, which does nothing to your price. Enjoy!
I love life. Seriously! Each. Day. A. Gift. Former CPA, business advisor, youth pastor, development director. Manage marketing efforts for Covenant Eyes and CEO of PYE. God shares wild ideas with me about life while I run. I have a relentless drive to help families use technology well.