live video

Musical.ly kills its standalone live-streaming app Live.ly

Posted by | Apps, live streaming, live video, live.ly, Mobile, musical.ly, Social, Video | No Comments

Musical.ly is merging the functionality from its two-year old live-streaming platform Live.ly into its main app, and has disabled Live.ly’s standalone app as part of the transition process. The Live.ly app will eventually be pulled from the App Store and Google Play, the company confirmed to TechCrunch. Instead of being able to go live, Live.ly users are presented with a message about the changes, informing them that live streaming has now moved over to Musical.ly.

This change is also confirmed via Live.ly’s App Store update text, which says:

Live.ly is becoming part of musical.ly!
– You can go live on musical.ly right now! Plenty of live content there!

Live.ly first launched in May 2016, offering Musical.ly users a live-streaming platform, where the streams were directly viewable on Musical.ly, as well as within the Live.ly mobile app.

As the video creator streamed, they’d see a count of how many people were watching, and would see hearts float up across the screen when viewers “liked” their content — an experience that’s very similar to Twitter/Periscope and Facebook Live. Viewers could also chat with the streamer, and engage in real-time conversations.

Unfortunately for Live.ly users, there was little warning about the shut down, and it seems that, for some, live streaming on Musical.ly is not working as expected.

One regular Live.ly user posted to YouTube about the shutdown, complaining that after she made the switch to Musical.ly for her live stream as instructed, but no people were online watching and no likes and comments were showing up, either. This appears to be some sort of glitch, as viewers, likes, comments and other Live.ly core features are displaying for others who have been transitioned to the Musical.ly-based live-streaming experience.

Not everyone will be able to go live directly on Musical.ly today, as the addition of live-streaming support is a phased rollout.

However, the company says it remains committed to investing in live-streaming functionality, despite the Live.ly shutdown. We’re told that the majority of live-stream viewership was already taking place on Musical.ly’s main app, so it made sense for the company to consolidate the live video alongside the other short, lip sync videos Musical.ly is known for.

The closure of Live.ly is one of the first major changes to the Musical.ly product following its acquisition by Chinese media company Bytedance for up to $1 billion in November 2017.

Under its new ownership, Musical.ly launched a $50 million fund to help build out its creator community, but has also faced criticism for having poor content moderation capabilities — something that’s especially concerning given that a large part of its viewership audience is children.

It is also now facing a new threat: this month, Facebook began testing a Musical.ly competitor called Lip Sync Live.

The increased competition may have played a role in having Musical.ly consolidate its resources in order to focus on its flagship app, not its spinoff.

The main Musical.ly app has a reported 200 million registered users, 60 million of whom are active on a monthly basis.

Live.ly has been downloaded 26 million times to date, 87 percent on iOS. The U.S. accounts for about 70 percent of installs, according to data from Sensor Tower.

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Zoosk relaunches dating app Lively as a way to meet new people while playing trivia games

Posted by | Apps, dating, Gaming, iOS apps, live video, lively, Mobile, Social, trivia, video chat, zoosk | No Comments

Hoping to capitalize on the popularity of trivia applications like HQ Trivia, dating app maker Zoosk has just released an experimental app that combines trivia with the potential for meeting someone new. The app is a relaunch and complete makeover of Zoosk’s Lively, which first debuted in July 2016 as a dating app that used video to tell stories, instead of static profile images.

The new version of Lively is nothing like its former namesake.

As Zoosk explains, the previous version of Lively’s group video chat app was fun, but people didn’t know how to connect and relate to one another using the video format. It felt awkward to start conversations, with no reason to be there besides wanting to date.

The company went back to the drawing board, so to speak, to think about what sort of experiences could bring people together. Trivia, naturally, came to mind.

Lively aims to reproduce the feeling that comes with competing at a bar trivia night. When you join, you’re placed in a group video chat team of two to four people. Together, the team works to answer a series of 12 questions while discussing the answers over video in real-time. When they finish the questions, they’ll be able to see how their scores compared with other teams.

The “dating” component to the app isn’t quite what you would expect. In fact, it’s less of a way to find a date for a night out, than it is to just make new friends. After the game wraps, you’ll have the option to continue chatting with the other players, if you choose. You can also add people as a friend, if you hit it off.

And when trivia isn’t in session – the games run twice daily at 3 PM and 7 PM PST – you can group video chat with others on Lively.

Because you’re not added to a team with nearby players, your ability to make friends who are also possible real-life dating prospects is decidedly limited. That’s something that Lively could change to support in time, if it’s able to grow its user base. But for now, it needs to match users with any live players in order to fill out its teams.

It’s understandable why it went this route, but it doesn’t lend itself well to meeting someone special – unless you’re open to meeting people anywhere (which some are), or are fine with just making new friends and seeing where that leads.

Unlike HQ Trivia, which features live streams with a host, Lively is just group video chat with a trivia component. That means it won’t be as challenging for Zoosk to operate, as it doesn’t have to worry with bandwidth issues and other costs of putting on a live game show. Also, because there are no prizes or payouts, you can join anytime during the 30-minute gaming session to be placed into a team and play along.

Lively is not the first app to support a group video chat interface where gameplay is an option. A number of video chat apps over the years have integrated games into their experience, including older apps like Tango or Google+ Hangouts, Line, and more recently, Facebook Messenger. But none have integrated games for the purpose of facilitating new relationships.

Zoosk today has 38 million members, but wanted to find a way to reach a younger demographic, which is why it originally launched Lively. The app was the first product to emerge from Zoosk’s in-house incubator, Zoosk Labs, where the company experiments with new ideas to expand its core business.

Whether or not Zoosk can turn trivia players into love connections remains to be seen, but it’s interesting how HQ Trivia’s success has led to this wider market full of knock-offs (e.g. Genius, Joyride, Cash Show, The Q, TopBuzz, Live Quiz, Live.me, Halftime Live!, Jam Music, etc.) and other tweaks that follow its idea of live trivia games.

Lively is available on iOS only for now.

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Periscope ups payouts to broadcasters on sales of Super Hearts, adds holiday bonuses

Posted by | Apps, braodcasters, live streaming, live video, Media, Mobile, Periscope, TC, Twitter, Video | No Comments

 Twitter’s Periscope is going after live broadcasters in a big way, as it’s now promising to give back more of their earnings from the sales of Super Hearts in their live video streams.
Introduced in June, Super Hearts are in-app virtual goods that offer a form of virtual tipping.
The idea is similar to Twitch’s or YouTube’s emotes, but instead of custom emoji… Read More

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Twitter brings on a new lead for its live video business

Posted by | Apps, live video, Mobile, Periscope, Personnel, Social, TC, Todd Swidler, Twitter | No Comments

 Another new hire for Twitter was announced today, but this one is tied more closely to its big push into live video as part of its efforts to differentiate itself from other platforms. Twitter COO Anthony Noto said today that the company has hired Todd Swidler as its global head of Live Business. Read More

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Twitter now lets brands make their own ‘custom hearts’ for Periscope live videos

Posted by | Ads, Advertising Tech, live video, Media, Mobile, Periscope, Social, TC, Twitter | No Comments

 Those little hearts you tap to signal to a live video’s creator that you’re enjoying the content might look a little different on Twitter in the future. The company announced today a new way for brands to engage fans through live video – it will now let them create their own “custom hearts” for use in Periscope’s live video. The customizations can be… Read More

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Trump’s inauguration broke live video streaming records

Posted by | Akamai, CDN, live streaming, live video, live video streaming, Media, Mobile, records, streaming, streaming video, TC, trump | No Comments

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20:  Supreme Court Justice John Roberts (2L) administers the oath of office to U.S. President Donald Trump (L) as his wife Melania Trump holds the Bible and son Barron Trump looks on, on the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. In today's inauguration ceremony Donald J. Trump becomes the 45th president of the United States.  (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) Though some cried while others cheered, both sides tuned into to watch President Trump’s inauguration in sizable numbers – record-breaking numbers, in fact. The event has broken new ground, becoming the largest, single live news event that content delivery network Akamai has ever hosted, the company says, following an analysis of its live video data. According to Akamai, live… Read More

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Twitch opens to vloggers with launch of “IRL,” mobile broadcasting to come next year

Posted by | broadcasting, game culture, Gamers, Gaming, live steaming, live video, mobile broadcasting, streaming video, TC, Twitch, Video, video streaming, vlog, vlogging | No Comments

twitch-irl1 After slowly testing the waters with non-game related content, Twitch is officially opening its doors to vloggers. The company today is debuting a new content category on its site called “IRL,” which is where Twitch creators can broadcast anything about their life, communicate with fans, and share their opinions. In addition, because IRL broadcasting is the sort of thing Twitch… Read More

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Facebook needs a way to report content as “Graphic But Newsworthy”

Posted by | Apps, Facebook, Facebook Live, live video, Media, Mobile, Philando Castile, Security, TC | No Comments

Police Officer Fatally Shoots Black Man During Traffic Stop Near St. Paul Mark Zuckerberg believes Facebook Live could illuminate wrongdoing in the world.
Facebook still hasn’t explained the details of its policy on censorship of Live video. But today in response to the police shooting of Philando Castile whose last moments of life were broadcast on Facebook, CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted that “The images we’ve seen this week are graphic and… Read More

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Watch Facebook’s F8 conference here, plus what to expect

Posted by | Apps, chatbots, Developer, eCommerce, F8, Facebook, live video, Media, Messenger, Mobile, Social, TC, Virtual reality | No Comments

F8 Chatbots, Live video, and VR technology are all on the docket for Facebook’s F8 developer conference, and you can watch the livestream here at 9:30am PST with Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote starting at 10am. There’ll also be more streamed sessions all day today. Read More

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Facebook bets big on Live with new mobile video discovery tab

Posted by | Apps, Entertainment, Facebook, Facebook Live, live video, Media, Mobile, Social, TC | No Comments

Facebook Video Hub Today Facebook launches its full assault on YouTube with a dedicated hub for watching Live and recorded videos in its mobile app. A Video tab is taking over Messenger’s prime, center spot in the navigation bar at the bottom of the screen, turning Facebook into a destination for discovering videos categorized by topic beyond stumbling across them in the feed. The Video hub heavily… Read More

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