Facebook Gaming Emerges as the Latest Threat to Twitch
Microsoft had high expectations for Mixer and hoped that one day its platform could challenge Twitch and YouTube. Those expectations remain unfulfilled and there is no chance for Mixer to reach its full potential, as it was acquired by Facebook Gaming. The deal came as a surprise to many, including professional streamers who chose to migrate to this new platform. Under the Facebook umbrella, they will have sufficient opportunities for growth, while challenging Twitch for the top streaming platform.
Facebook Gaming Enjoys a Meteoric Growth
Twitch is the dominant streaming platform and its position at the top of the food chain remains unthreatened for the time being. Having said this, Facebook Gaming is quick to close the gap and in recent weeks, its accelerated growth gained further traction. The number of hours watched over the last quarter is nothing short of impressive, with viewers spending 75% more time watching streams. They have crossed the psychological threshold of 1 billion hours and this positive trend will likely continue.
The surge is self-evident, but while Facebook Gaming is making giant leaps forward, Twitch doesn’t seem to slow down either. It posted even more impressive numbers, with its own members spending more than 5 billion hours on the platform. Looking at the percentages, they have increased the number of hours spent by players watching streams by more than 50%. If both platforms continue to grow at the same rate, Facebook will ultimately overtake Twitch for the first place but it will take a while for this to happen.
A Great Year for Live Streaming Platforms
Few people and business owners can say that 2020 was a great year, but live streaming platforms have thrived over the last six months. As people are compelled to spend more time indoors, the number of viewers has increased significantly, with the numbers revolving around 60%. Twitch doesn’t rely exclusively on video games and its Just Chatting category is enjoying just as much success. As more people sign up for accounts and use their services, its market share continues to grow.
Facebook Gaming has the resources, ambition and now the know-how from Mixer specialists to challenge Twitch for the lead. It will need to find a way to retain the streamers that had a contract with Mixer and found themselves without the job. They are expected to thrive on both short-term and in the long run, while turning into the main competitor for Twitch. The first obstacle they need to overcome is overtaking YouTube as the second most popular live streaming platform, which is a reasonable objective.