YouTube is doing a lot these days, and only a few people will be surprised at that. The Google-owned video site is in a race to win the hearts of consumers out there, and is leaving nothing to chance to remain relevant in a field where Facebook Live is gaining wider acceptance. On Thursday, YouTube announced addition of a live streaming option to its mobile app. This new feature, which is now available to a few users, will enable them broadcast live video from mobile devices with a touch of the button.
YouTube’s new feature puts it in direct competition with Twitter’s Periscope and Facebook’s Live video options. Both Periscope and Facebook Live have been enjoying loads of positive reviews from users these days; with loads of adoption as well. This leaves YouTube with a lot of work to do if it hopes to remain relevant in the eyes of its users.
“Today, we are announcing a new chapter in bringing the power of live video to creators everywhere. Soon, we’ll be putting the power of YouTube live streaming in the palm of your hands,” a statement on the YouTube Creator blog read.
The new feature will be baked right into the “core” YouTube mobile app, so you won’t have to struggle finding your way through how to use it. There is a “big red” button at the right corner of the app, and all you have to do is hit it to start broadcasting live to your fans—and you can also chat and keep in touch with your fans too.
The mobile live streaming feature will not be that different from your regular videos on YouTube. You will still be able to search videos, find them through “recommendations and playlists and also protect them from unauthorized uses.” YouTube is also promising reliability and speed; which of course, is important with Facebook Live and Periscope breathing down its neck.
In fairness to YouTube, the video streaming company has done a lot to make live streaming very popular among users. Live streaming on YouTube dates back to 2011 when it successfully got millions of people tuned in to watch the “Royal Wedding,” and built on that achievement when one-sixth of the Internet watched Felix Baumgartner leap from space live on YouTube in 2012. The only limitation to all that is that live streaming was limited to those with verified channels and could only be done through the Creator Studio.
With mobile live streaming, YouTube, is however, telling everyone who cares to listen that it is up for the fight and is not about to surrender its share of the market to Periscope and Facebook Live video.
In addition to this new feature, YouTube is also promising “faster and more reliable than anything else out there.” The feature is currently only available to a handful of users, with no mention of a date when every user will be able to access it on their mobile phone.
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