YouTube began as a venture-funded technology startup, primarily from an $11.5 million investment by Sequoia Capital between November 2005 and April 2006. YouTube’s early headquarters were situated above a pizzeria and Japanese restaurant in San Mateo, California.
The domain name www.youtube.com was activated on February 14, 2005. The first YouTube video was entitled, “Me at the zoo,” and shows co- founder Jawed Karim at the San Diego Zoo. The video was uploaded on April 23, 2005, and can still be viewed on the site.
YouTube offered the public a beta test of the site in May 2005, six months before the official launch in November 2005. The site grew rapidly, and in July 2006 the company announced that more than 65,000 new videos were being uploaded every day, and that the site was receiving 100 million video views per day.
According to data published by market research company ComScore, YouTube is the dominant provider of online video in the United States, with a market share of around 43 percent and more than 14 billion videos viewed in May 2010. In October 2006, Google Inc. announced that it had acquired YouTube for $1.65 billion in Google stock, and the deal was finalized on November 13, 2006. In June 2008, a Forbes magazine article projected the 2008 revenue at $200 million, noting progress in advertising sales. ￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼
￼￼￼￼YouTube entered into a marketing and advertising partnership with NBC in June 2006. In November 2008, YouTube reached an agreement with MGM, Lions Gate Entertainment, and CBS, allowing the companies to post full-length films and television episodes on the site, accompanied by advertisements in a section for US viewers called “Shows.” In November 2009, YouTube launched a version of “Shows” available to UK viewers, offering around 4,000 full-length shows from more than 60 partners.
In January 2010, YouTube introduced an online film rental service, which is available only to users in the US, Canada and the UK as of 2010. The service offers over 6,000 films. In March 2010, YouTube began free streaming of certain content, including 60 cricket matches of the Indian Premier League.
According to YouTube, this was the first worldwide free online broadcast of a major sporting event. In May 2010, it was reported that YouTube was serving more than two billion videos a day, which it described as “nearly double the prime-time audience of all three major US television networks combined.”
In May 2011, YouTube reported in its company blog that the site was receiving more than three billion views per day. In November 2011, the Google+ social networking site was integrated directly with YouTube and the Chrome web browser, allowing YouTube videos to be viewed from within the Google+ interface. In January 2012, YouTube stated that the figure had increased to four billion videos streamed per day.