From delivering sports from around the world to watching other people play games, live streaming has been around for decades, but has seldom been much more than a viewing experience for users. Sure, a chat feature may have been incorporated here and there, but for the most part, you’re there to watch something unfold in real-time. Twitch was one of the major beneficiaries of going all-in on live streaming and continues to lead the way.
In 2022, some 21 billion hours of viewing time were spent on Twitch, further enforcing it as the go-to place for people to enjoy live content and communities. Importantly, however, there’s been a distinct veering away from the platform’s usual video gaming content. This type of content decreased in viewing time, Engadget notes, but on Twitch, the Just Chatting category grew by 2.2 percent between quarters.
It’s an indication of a much wider trend in the market, which is that live streaming is applied to far more experiences and products than it once was.
From a passive activity of viewing and maybe chatting, live streaming has become interactive in a few places across the internet. A good example of live streaming adapted to enhance a product can be found with the live online casino Ireland hosts. Starting with the likes of live blackjack and live roulette, the section has exploded in recent years.
Still using the same HD live streaming cameras along with an adapted UI, game control unit, and optical character recognition tech, the live offering expanded to novel variants like Lightning Roulette. Then, the live gameshows came into play. Money Drop Live, Boom City, and Dream Catcher are now favorites on the online casino platform. The key to success has been professional croupiers and immersive real-time betting.
Boasting hundreds of thousands of positive reviews on the App Store and Play Store, Clawee has become a massive success riding a very similar angle to live casino play. The mobile gaming app livestreams a real claw machine from the studio. Through the app Clawee, you get to play the machine while watching it live, and anything that you win is posted to you.
Next steps for live streaming tech and applications
One area that has already become mainstream for live tech in China is live commerce. It might not be popular beyond the Asia-Pacific region just yet, but there are bound to be some innovative steps in the sector very soon. One way detailed by McKinsey is to utilize AR and VR technology to make the live shopping experience even more immersive. It’ll make buying in real-time online even more comparable to real-world shopping.
Supporting this theory is the sheer amount of money that a company looking to integrate live technology into the metaverse recently raised. Based in the UK, Condense managed to raise $4.5 million in funding to help it build its virtual technology that will livestream real-world performances to the virtual world. Incorporating live streaming into VR landscapes will only blur the lines between the virtual and the real worlds further, maximizing immersion.
Live streaming has come a tremendously long way even just over the last five years or so. With interactive streams taking off across several industries, perhaps going live in the virtual world will be the tech’s next big step.