“Exciting times for live video streaming” isn’t a term we expected to say this side of 2015 but the rate of new apps being introduced that are able to bridge the functionality gap, (Pan Pan, Nutshell, Hopper, Tworlds) has seen a big increase in the last few months. A gap that certain mainstream social channels simply aren’t fulfilling. Pushing competition, design and usability in a very healthy and competitive direction.
This last couple of weeks has seen the emergence of new live video streaming app; ‘Meerkat’ gain unprecedented popularity after launching 2nd February. The app which was launched with ‘social graph’ integration, a Twitter API functionality available to beta level apps that migrates and mirrors a users Twitter community. Meaning once signed-up, new profiles can enjoy being connected to the same users as they currently have on Twitter; including all the profiles of those they are following and their own followers.
Once signed in, users can follow other Meerkat profiles and be prompted with new streams once they are launched either in the app or via a link on Twitter. Once on the stream, users can enjoy mobile level, live video intimacy and simple comments fed in by anyone watching with their Twitter handle clearly visible. Although, Meerkat has been heavily criticised for some of its features including the fact that every update posted in-app is automatically duplicated on Twitter.
However, since the launch of Meerkat and its explosive showcasing at SXSW, including early adoption by the likes of Spotify, MTV, Foursquare and Mastercard, the app has enjoyed plenty of support from digital news heavyweights Mashable. Twitter has, in turn, responded with some minor but well calculated moves that have seen not only the withdrawal of the social graph functionality but have also ensured themselves to have a healthy advantage in the video-streaming playing field with the somewhat kneejerk purchase of the (still in beta) live video streaming app Periscope.
— Periscope (@periscopeco) March 13, 2015
Meerkat, despite its infancy, has already been lauded for its snappy design and refreshingly simple usability. Alongside the recent advent of Twitter video, it’s a welcome disruptor in the live-video playing field among other video apps Snapchat and Vine, evidently surprising Twitter by racing ahead with a healthy subscription rate, winning the hearts of some of the web’s most popular Vloggers and Tech influencers.
Will it last? Will Twitter prevail? Have you used the app yourself?
Love Meerkat? Hate Meerkat? WTF IS Meerkat?
We want to know.