Founded in 2011, Twitch is a simple online service to use for streaming and watching digital video broadcasts. Back in the days, Twitch was a lot about video games, but it has expanded over the years, with streams on music, artwork creation, talk shows, and even TV series.
Every month, more than 2 million streamers are on Twitch and 17 thousands of them getting paid thanks to the Twitch Partner program. Even if Amazon bought Twitch in 2014, it still stands out as one of the most impressive internet traffic in North America. The ownership has changed a little on the surface, and it did bring improvements for the platforms. Micro-donations to streamers are possible due to the introduction of Bits (the digital currency bought with Amazon payments).
Can you watch it everywhere?
You can only view Twitch on the official Twitch websites and the official Twitch apps for both Android and iOS devices. Xbox One and Xbox 360 video games consoles also allow you to view Twitch. The list also includes Amazon Fire TV, PlayStation 3 and 4, Roku, Google Chromecast, and NVIDIA Shield.
You don’t need to log in nor to pay to watch videos and broadcasts on Twitch. However, when you’re making an account, you’re going to be able to make a list of favorite channels (just like you do when subscribing to a channel on YouTube). It’s easy to become a part of one’s stream’s chatroom.
Twitch streamers use hosting a lot, broadcasting another channel’s live stream to their audience.
Can we define Twitch as a Social Network?
Twitch has evolved a lot since its beginning, adding several features along the way. The era when it was a primary streaming media site is long gone, and one can say that Twitch resembles a social network a lot these days.
It’s possible for Twitch users to follow and even send direct messages (DM) to each other, with every stream having a single chatroom. The users can connect in the chatroom, whereas the Pulse feature works just like Twitter or Facebook timeline, allowing everyone on the network to post a status update. Users can also share, like, or comment on other people’s activity.
The official Twitch mobile apps ease out the operation of the features, which is why Twitch has become a real competitor to other social apps. Even if Twitch wasn’t a social network, in the beginning, we could honestly say that it has become one.
What categories can you find on Twitch?
In all fairness, Twitch was about video game streaming service in the beginning, but it did expand a lot since then. There are plenty of non-gaming categories just as popular as gaming ones, with IRL (In Real Life) becoming more and more attractive over the years.
Talk Shows are also another non-gaming category to name, and it includes podcasts, live panel discussions, variety shows. If you’re big on cooking and food shows, you should take a look at the Cooking category.
Don’t skip on the Creative category either, with cosplayers, programmers, artists, and designers streaming the whole creative process for their viewers. It’s a particular category that only some people find interest in, but it’s popular, nevertheless.
Can you quit your job and only live from Twitch?
Briefly put, yes, but take it with a grain of salt. Not everyone on Twitch has left their regular jobs just yet, but many streamers make excellent money by streaming on the service. It’s a combination of recurring paid subscriptions, micro-donations, sponsorship, affiliate sales, advertisement, and regular donations as well.
It takes a lot of dedication for obtaining that level of success on Twitch. Just that you know, the popular Affiliates and Twitch partners have to stream even seven days a week for keeping their audience hooked.
What’s the best way to find Twitch Streamers?
Twitch has a list of recommendations on the front page of the apps and website. You may also browse the Games category to identify the Twitch channels you may be interested in. It’s an option for all the apps and Twitch website since it’s straightforward to locate a live stream connected to a series or a game title.
Creative, Popular, Communities and Discover are other categories to check. You can identify them in the Browse section of the leading site, with some not showing in the on the official Twitch apps.
We should note that many popular Twitch streamers are also active on Instagram and Twitter. Therefore, social media is another way to identify new streamers. Social media is even better as it allows you to find the streamers according to their interests and personalities, which may not be that easy on Twitch. Use “streamer,” “Twitch streamer,” and “twitch stream” as keywords when looking on Social Media.
What’s to say about Twitch Prime?
Twitch Prime is a premium membership for Twitch, and it relates to Amazon’s Amazon Prime system. When you own an Amazon Prime membership, you also get a Twitch Prime subscription automatically, with both of them cross-promoting the other.
Any user with Twitch Prime membership can benefit an ad0-free experience on Twitch, but also can download content for free for specific titles. A free subscription and video game discounts are included in the Twitch Prime membership. One can use the free subscription on all Twitch Partner’s channel (scroll down for the details), for showing their support. Twitch Prime is available in most regions over the world.
Twitch Affiliates and Partners- who can become one?
The Affiliates and Partners are the particular kinds of Twitch accounts that allow the monetization of broadcasts. You need to meet specific requirements to become a Twitch Affiliate or Partner, in terms of popularity and number of followers.
Twitch Affiliates receive access to Bits and 5% of game sale revenue that is made thanks to their profile.
On the other hand, Twitch Partners benefit the same compensations but also get video ads, custom badges, paid subscription options, emoticons, and various premium rewards for their channel.
Is there anyone competing with Twitch at the moment?
Twitch is the most popular service for watching and streaming video game footage or other related content at the moment; there’s no denying in that. The reality that Twitch was the first company to ever concentrate on designated video game streaming is the main reason for the current popularity. The role of innovations in the industry, especially in the area of helping the users monetize the content is fundamental for its popularity, nevertheless.
We should also mention that, even though it’s not as popular as Twitch (just yet), YouTube is also winning fans in the video game streaming market. YouTube Gaming initiative was released in 2015, and it’s a perfect example.
Microsoft doesn’t get down without a fight, buying the video game streaming service, Beam, in 2016. It was renamed afterward as Mixer, and it’s included straight into the Xbox One and Window 10 PC’ consoles.
Other smaller streaming services may become strong competitors for Twitch (Smashcast is one). However, Mixer and YouTube are posing the real risk for Twitch at the moment. The current user base and the size of the companies sure count a lot.
One last concern before you go on Twitch
Typically, you shouldn’t worry about your kids using Twitch. However, as the live stream goes on, users comment and interact with the streamers, and it’s only a matter of time until the chat is loaded with comments. The chances for some to use inappropriate language or to harass other users are to be considered. The moderators on Twitch may become overwhelmed by the number of comments and intensity of the activities.
The takeaway is that the chats cannot be moderated entirely, so parents should know if their kid is ready or not for Twitch.