YouTube takes on Twitch with YouTube Gaming
James R | On 13, Jun 2015
YouTube is taking on Twitch with its own gaming site: YouTube Gaming.
Gaming has become an increasingly key part of YouTube’s online presence: from let’s plays and walkthroughs to music videos, gamers have built up a diverse library of content and an equally large audience to match. According to YouTube trackers TubeFilter, in the week of 8th May, Felix Kjellberg’s PewDiePie channel was the third most popular in the world, with more than 90.6 million views in seven days. Minecraft channel The Diamond Minecart was the seventh.
When Amazon announced that it had bought Twitch last year for almost a billion dollars, then, the news was some surprise. YouTube, though, has started to strike back, adding support for 60fps live-streaming this month to rival Twitch’s offering.
YouTube’s competition will become even fiercer this summer with the spin-off app and website dedicated to games: gaming.youtube.com.
“YouTube Gaming is built to be all about your favorite games and gamers, with more videos than anywhere else,” says Alan Joyce, Product Manager.
The site will launch with more than 25,000 dedicated channels to different games, containing all the best videos and streams for each title. Channels from game publishers and YouTube creators will also be included.
Users will be able to add a game to their collection to keep up to date with the latest videos. Searches will also be limited to gaming content, allowing fans to locate relevant videos without YouTube’s gargantuan library getting in the way.
Live streams, though, will be a central focus.
“Live streams bring the gaming community closer together, so we’ve put them front-and-center on the YouTube Gaming homepage,” adds Joyce. “And in the coming weeks, we’ll launch an improved live experience that makes it simpler to broadcast your gameplay to YouTube.”
On top of existing features, such as 60fps streams, DVR, and automatically converting your stream into a YouTube video, YouTube’s new system will mean that creators no longer need to schedule a live event ahead of time, while all streams will be able to be shared via a single link. Subscribers will also be notified of new live streams.
The site will first launch in the US and UK, with a preview scheduled for E3 next week (available to stream live, naturally, on YouTube.com/e3).