Streaming video content is everywhere. But the service with the most momentum could be Amazon’s Twitch. Once geared toward video games, Twitch has broadened its horizons in the last year and turned into some of the most-watched programming around. It was recently reported that Twitch’s average viewership in January was 962,000 people — nearly at parity with the likes of major cable news networks and ESPN.
Twitch could end up leading the charge toward an OTT-centric future for live video content with those types of numbers. Consistency there, and other players following, could end up resulting in a mass migration to OTT for advertisers and premium inventory.
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In January, 962,000 people was the average viewership on Twitch. Sometimes there was more, sometimes there was less — but in general, nearly a million people were watching Twitch at any given point. That puts Twitch viewership on par with the likes of MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, and ESPN.
Wojcicki went on to say that she couldn’t speak to specific business deals or potential ones, but was comfortable laying out the pitch for why YouTube should be an attractive home to big live sporting events. That pitch centered mainly on YouTube’s scale — 1.5 billion logged-in users visit YouTube each month — and that the company has seen millions of viewers tune in at one time for live events such as the recent SpaceX rocket launch.
Of course, with the added channels, YouTube TV also announced plans to raise its price. Starting March 13, YouTube said, the base price for a YouTube TV subscription would increase $5 to $40 per month. Current members (or, anyone who signs up before March 13) will be grandfathered in and will keep paying $35 per month going forward. YouTube TV’s price increase brings the service to the same level of rivals like Hulu’s live-TV service, which also charges $40 per month to live-stream more than 50 channels (including Turner-owned networks)
With this, video creators can live stream their events from Vimeo to any RTMP-enabled (real-time messaging protocol) site, including Facebook, YouTube, Periscope, Twitch, and others. The feature will allow creators to save on bandwidth costs because they’ll be simulcasting via a single input stream, instead of requiring separate streams for each destination.
Almost exactly a year ago, former Periscope CEO Kayvon Beykpour told Mashable that, “as long as people are broadcasting using the app and people are watching using the app, there’s inherent value in it.” Of course, we all know that wasn’t the case with Twitter’s other now-defunct video property, Vine. On top of this, more people, many of whom were once prolific users on the platforms, are done tapping “Go Live” on Periscope. For example, Miller told Mashable last week he’s over it. “I have very low respect in regard to the leadership,” he said.
What makes these new listings especially interesting is that they are for live-streaming content, which seems like a new endeavor. Not only that, but the role requires the candidates to be extremely culturally knowledgeable and savvy with social media. The candidates must have experience developing story ideas, researching, and planning segments–all skills required for live television production. We can only speculate what kind of content this endeavor will produce, but these vacancies hint at new horizons for Amazon.
Facebook tells publishers to take it or leave it [The Verge]
TNT’s NBA VR Livestreams Begin February 16 [Engadget]
Baidu Confirms Plans to List Video-Streaming Unit [Financial Times]