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techweb January 25, 2006 (5:09 PM EST)
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techweb Renewed Video Sharing Trends Draw Heated Competition

By K.C. Jones, TechWeb News

Amateur and personal video is catching on again and competition is heating up between top companies as the Internet draws more people to share their videos online.

One such service, YouTube, is approaching its year anniversary as a consumer media company that allows uploading, tagging and sharing of personal video clips.

The company reports more than 6 million videos served up daily and active members who number into the hundreds of thousands on its site which allows free browsing, embedded codes on other sites, secure showings, social networks and playlists.

YouTube, founded in February 2005, competes with similar sites like for the growing number of amateur video enthusiast though they boast slightly different strengths.

DropShots draws people sharing video with family and friends -- as opposed to the world at large. It hosts more than 150,000 video clips and more than 2 million photographs daily, according to a statement released Tuesday. DropShots reports a monthly growth rate of more than 35 percent.

DropShots, which offers its service free up to a point (500 photos and 10 videos), does not feature commercial material, as do some of its competitors. Others trying to grab a slice of the market, which was virtually non-existent a few years ago, are: Vimeo, Sharkle, Grouper and VideoEgg.

Skype's VoIP customers and mobile phone users are also offered video sharing services now.

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