YouTube Adds Features, Test Site

New services available on YouTube could reflect growing influence of its parent company Google Inc.

The popular video Web site now allows users to organize clips around designated categories and, in typical Google fashion, lets them test new services before their commercial launch, according to information posted on the YouTube Web site.

The site describes TestTube as an "incubator" where YouTube engineers and developers test "recipes and concoctions that aren't quite fully baked" and welcome user feedback.

Two new services are available for testing: AudioSwap and Steams.

AudioSwap allows users to create song tracks for their videos by adding songs from artists and record labels. YouTube has reached agreements with an undisclosed number of artists and plans to add more.

Streams lets several users create an online YouTube "room" where they watch and interact with each other in real-time while sharing videos.

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