In face of increased competition from live streaming from mobile devices on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, YouTube is now introducing mobile live video streaming.
The company is quick to make clear that it has 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, YouTube 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.
Now, the ability to start a live video stream from an Android or iOS device will be built into the YouTube app, “just hit the big red capture button right there in the corner, take or select a photo to use as a thumbnail, and you can broadcast live to your fans and chat in near real time.”
The videos will be searchable by other users, or set to private so only people with the link will be able to access the stream.