Lets keep it simple before the rant starts. Livestreaming is coming to YouTube mobile app soon. Yes you heard right. I had to do a double take when I heard the news. I thought, like most people, livestreaming was already a feature in the mobile app. Like many people, I just took it for granted that because I watch live TV stations on my YouTube app, it automatically meant livestreaming service on was already there. Actually, only the web version had the feature.
I guess it is a case of it is never too late to start something worthwhile. However, being the number one online video portal on the web, it smacks of dereliction that livestreaming was not extended to the mobile app until now. Everybody is into livestreaming since Meerkat started the craze. Followed by Twitter’s Periscope. The success of Periscope ensured a copycat attempt by Facebook with Facebook Live. But Facebook being Facebook, with its one and a half billion-user base, that attempt became the real deal. Periscope is now under the shadow of Facebook Live. And to underline they really mean business, Facebook is paying out a lot of money to businesses, big media houses and celebrities to start using Facebook Live. Simply put, Facebook Live is determined to be the outright number one in the livestreaming niche. Other apps too are all lining up to take a punt at livestreaming.
And YouTube that is synonymous with videos stood idly watching as others made inroads in that lucrative field. Now they’ve decided to launch the service, they’ll find out they have a lot of catching up to do. A lot. Seriously, even the launch of the 360-degree livestreaming video is not up to scratch compared to what livestreaming can do on mobile apps. For one, 360-degree livestreaming is highly technical. And you need to buy specialized camera to do it. So it caters for only people who are really interested in doing specialized videos. Livestreaming on the other hand, requires only a good smartphone and internet data. Just about anybody can do it.
Again, it boggles the mind YouTube took so long to delve into this. And what is even baffling is that for now, the feature is to be tried by selected users on their developer program. What are they waiting for? They should just roll it out already! I just hope all this testing is to make it very easy to use. At least, easier than what Facebook Live or Periscope are offering.
From the early screenshots, the livestreaming user interface on YouTube would resemble Periscope’s. There would be a feature for incoming chat messages from people watching. And there is also a feature to limit viewing to only selected users. Close friends perhaps. The idea of simplicity seems to have taken root in the new feature. To start streaming, you can hit a new ‘capture’ button in the mobile app, add a description and start broadcasting. If you are have subscribers (which is essential) to your channel, there is also a feature to notify them when you start livestreaming.
The announcement of the feature on YouTube Creator blog, reminded readers that livestreaming is not a new thing on YouTube. Yeah, but the point still remains, why did it take so long to bring it to mobile devices, if you are pioneers of the feature on the web? Anyway, read how they broke the news of their livestreaming feature for mobile devices
We’ve been offering live streaming on YouTube since 2011, before it was cool. Millions of people around the world tuned in to watch the Royal Wedding in 2011. One-sixth of the Internet watched Felix Baumgartner leap from space live on YouTube in 2012.
And just this year, we became the first to ever broadcast a 360-degree live stream during Coachella. Over 21 million people tuned in to watch Coachella on YouTube this year—almost twice as many as tuned in to watch the season finale of American Idol.
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.
We think this will offer you an entirely new, more intimate and spontaneous way to share your experiences with your communities. We’re launching today with The Young Turks, AIB, Platica Polinesia, SacconeJolys, and Alex Wassabi at VidCon and will be rolling it out more widely soon.”
Well, we wish them all the best in their belated entry into video livestreaming on mobile devices.
photo credit: YouTube; Ventuebeat