YouTube isn’t just a repository for a billion cat videos: businesses also rely on it as a platform for product demonstrations, footage from conferences, and any number of other uses. In light of that, being able to measure YouTube’s metrics could prove a valuable tool. Over the past few months, YouTube’s engineers have integrated a number of analytics features into the online-video platform. These include a “Views” report that displays data related to minutes watched and similar metrics; a beta version of an “Annotations report” that views user engagement through the prism of click and close rates; a “Date slider” visualization tool for video performance over a set period of time; and a metadata section for video content. Other features allow the user to compare metrics such as Views and Total Estimated Earnings, important for anyone who relies on YouTube as a monetization platform. “We understand the importance of having data and insights for your channel and want to continue improving our analytics to help you grow your audience,” Ted Hamilton, YouTube product manager, wrote in an Oct. 11 corporate blog posting. “Please let us know if there are any other features you would like us to build, in the comments below.” In those comments, users asked for annotations for mobile devices and televisions and additional statistics. It’s widely accepted that the amount of video hosted in data centers will only increase in coming years, accompanied by a rising desire on the part of companies to data-mine it for all manner of insights. While that trend could create some notable opportunities for IT vendors, it could also lead to headaches for those CIOs and other IT pros tasked with storing, managing, delivering, and running the analytical tools associated with all that video data.   Image: Google