You Can Now Livestream from Your iPhone on Facebook


You no longer have to be a celebrity to broadcast live content from your iPhone via Facebook. But that doesn’t mean people will be lining up to watch you livestream your morning breakfast ritual with your cat – or will they?

While Facebook is late to the livestreaming party – YouTube, Twitter’s Periscope, and Meerkat have offered livestreaming for months or years – its presence reinforces the arrival of live video.

All an user has to do is open their Facebook app and tap on “post” as one would to make a routine status update. Now, in addition to options to post a photo or video, there is now a livestream icon to tap.

After tapping the icon, the user is given the option of typing in a description of what is about to be streamed. Then simply tap “Go Live” to begin the livestream. Afterwards, there is an option to save the video to the camera’s memory.

To build an audience, users simply hashtag in the names of people they want to invite to watch the stream, which is immediately available to all friends and remains on the page as a regular post afterwards which can be forwarded and tagged.

Beware, those who do not turn of their phone’s notifications and ringer are likely to have their live feed interrupted. In that case, the screen shows a ‘paused’ message and gives an option to restart when the notification has been dismissed or resolved by the user.

“Facebook is the largest social network and mobile livestreaming is not even a year old, so Facebook has for sure not missed the right moment to join the party,” Alex Khan, Periscope consultant writes in an email response.

Video is already a major component of social networking and livestreaming is just its newest iteration.

“Users on Facebook consume 100 million hours of video every single day,” says Dan Rayburn, streaming media technology, content, and business model analyst in an interview. “That’s just crazy. End of last year, people were consuming five billion hours of video a day on Facebook. That’s just staggering.”

While Mr. Rayburn says it’s too early to know the impact yet, he says, “it’s nice that they’re expanding that ability to more people, but the average person really isn’t who they need to be livestreaming in order to make an impact in the market.”

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SOURCE: Christian Science Monitor, Lisa Suhay