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Google launches Cameos, a video Q&A app aimed at celebs and public figures

Google has launched a new video-based Q&A app called Cameos on the App Store, which allows people to answer questions about themselves, then share those answers directly on Google. The app is aimed at celebrities and other public figures, who are often the subject of peoples Google searches. With the Cameos app, they can address fans questions in their own voice, instead of leaving the answers up to other websites. The feature is an extension of the companys Posts on Google platform which has been slowly rolling out over the past couple of years, giving some people and organizations the ability to post directly to Googles search result pages. Initially, Posts on Google was open only to a small number of celebrities, sports teams and leagues, movie studios and museums. But last year, it expanded to local businesses who could then publish their events, products and services. This spring, it opened up to musicians. And it had been earlier experimenting with a feature that inserted celebs video answers into search, as well. Those invited to use the service have been able to post updates to Google which include text, images, video, GIFs, events, and links to other sites. In a way, its like Googles version of Twitter – but with the goal of helping web searchers find answers to questions. The new Cameos app is focused specifically on video posts. As the App Store description explains: Record video answers to the most asked questions on Google and then post them right to Google. Now, when people search for you, theyll get answers directly from you. The app also allows celebrities using Cameos to see the top questions the internet wants answers to, so they can pick and choose which of those they want to answer. Their answers, recorded with their iPhones camera, will be published directly to Google search and in the Google app. The service brings to mind Instagrams new Q&A feature, launched this July. Via a Questions widget thats added to an Instagram Story, users can solicit questions from their followers. The recipient can then select the questions they want to respond to, and post their replies publicly to their Instagram Story. The feature become so popular, so quickly, that it began to dominate peoples Stories feed. There was even a bit of backlash. Googles Cameo video answers could be more useful, as theyd only appear when that question was searched on Google. It would also give Google a social platform of sorts – a market it has tried to compete in for years, and is now littered with failures like Orkut, Dodgeball, Latitude, Lively, Google Wave, Google Buzz, and of course, Google+. At least with Posts, Google is focusing on what it does best: Search. Google confirmed the feature is part of its earlier efforts around Posts on Google using video. The Cameos app is part of a pilot that makes it possible for celebrities and other prominent figures to participate, a spokesperson said. The Cameos app description also notes that it will add more questions for celebs to answer on a regular basis. Access to use Cameos is only available upon invitation. Those interested can download the iOS app to request access. Updated 8/9/18, 11:20 AM with Google comment

Google's latest iOS app is built for celebrity Q&A

Their responses on Cameos will appear in their Google search results. Google is giving stars another direct line to their fans with Cameos, a Q&A app that's targeted towards public figures. They can share their video answers in the knowledge panel on their Google search result pages, so there's an incentive for celebrities to get involved and ensure information about them is accurate. Cameos ties into the Posts on Google tool, as TechCrunch notes. That platform lets the likes of celebrities, politicians, sports teams and local businesses share tweet-like posts in the knowledge panel on their search result pages. The knowledge panel is the section that includes key information about the person or organization you're searching for, often including links to their social profiles. Users of Cameos will see the top queries people want answers to, seemingly including questions asked specifically about them in search along with trending topics they may wish to weigh in on. Google will add more questions on a regular basis, and among those offering their responses so far are Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant and model Karlie Kloss. Access to Cameos is by invitation. If you're interested (and think you have sufficient social cache), you can download the app to request permission.