The Facebook Live platform is expanding with new tools that allow users to stream content live from the comfort of their desktops and laptops.
Initially announced last year for just mobile devices, users could still use Facebook Live on their computer systems but the process lacked simplicity. Individuals had to use third-party streaming software adjacent to Facebook Live in order to share their videos.
Now, though, the social media giant is removing the need of any additional tools. All users have to do is create a post and click the new “Live Video” option that will appear on the top of everyone’s news feed. Following that, the stream can be shared through Facebook Groups, Pages, and Events. Additional options will also allow streamers to insert custom graphics and overlays in their videos.
Facebook didn’t hide the fact that it is rolling out the new feature to give competition to more popular platforms like Twitch and YouTube Gaming. “This new feature makes it easier than ever to stream your PC gameplay to friends and followers and engage with them while you play,” reads the announcement.
While competition is always welcomed, Facebook Live is yet to feature any method for users to monetize their efforts. Twitch, on the other hand, has its own partnership program that enables regular streamers to profit off their audience. Similar, YouTube Gaming too allows for revenue generation. According to Facebook, it is working on the shortcoming and will reveal details once the time is right.
Could Facebook Live finally be the one to make a dent in the throne of Twitch? It’s unlikely at this point since Twitch has managed to gain a monstrous market share over the years as the primary platform for video game streaming. On the other hand, the fact remains that the amount of Facebook users is significantly larger than Twitch. We’re talking billions, a figure that Facebook must somehow convince to start going live for their streaming needs.
Earlier this year, Blizzard signed an exclusive agreement to move the coverage of competitive Heroes of the Storm in its entirety over to Facebook. In the same month, G2 Esports announced a new social media strategy that would see the team bring its content over to Facebook as well.
Facebook is certainly maneuvering itself to get a share of the esports pie.