Twitch is undoubtedly the biggest streaming platform in operation today, with over 15 million active users per day. However, there has been some rival platforms enter the equation in the past, some of which are still attracting viewers to this day. So, just who are the biggest competitors to Twitch and what are they doing at present?
Launched in 2016, Mixer is an American video game streaming platform that was established in an attempt to compete with Twitch. Popular channels on Mixer revolve around Fortnite, Apex Legends and PUBG on the whole, with Microsoft’s HypeZone technology have attracted viewers in particular. This feature makes it easy for users to move between screens, while a battle royal streamer within the remaining 5 players in a match will always be hosted. Meanwhile, and in what is seen by some as another advantage in which Mixer has over Twitch, viewers can communicate directly with gameplay on supported streams, as compared to the chat features elsewhere.
While Mixer was seen as having the potential to push Twitch the hardest in terms of Esports, Microsoft closed the platform on July 23, 2020, as a result of its lack of scalability. However, an agreement was made prior to this for Mixer’s most popular channels to join Facebook’s streaming platform.
We all know about YouTube, however the video sharing platform are perhaps the closest to rivalling Twitch at present in terms of gaming streaming. While Twitch has been working hard to enhance its video storage service, YouTube have moved into the streaming game, with many Esports fans now favouring their site. As a brand, YouTube speaks for itself, while they are unrivalled when it comes to video storage. However, their strict copyright policies mean that YouTube is not so appealing to content creators, which is what has put off many of gaming’s biggest personalities already.
Founded in 2015, Hitbox was established in an attempt to reduce latency surrounding the video gaming streaming industry, whilst also making the experience for viewers more interactive. Having signed major deals with ESL Gaming, DreamHack and Wargaming in 2016, Hitbox was forced to cancel plans to launch a 4K, 60FPS streaming service shortly after, with the platform eventually being purchased by Azubu in January 2017. Azubu quickly shut down Hitbox and launched Smashcast, a live streaming platform managed by many of the former Hitbox workforce.
Speaking of Azubu, their history dates back to 2012, with over $40 million in investment having been received from the Sapinda Group over a four year period. Founder Lars Windhorst was one of the first to recognise the appeal of video game live streaming, with League of Legends being the most popular title on Azubu. The likes of Faker, MadLife and SKT T1K partnered with Azubu in 2014, however after some poor management, the company revealed that they were working on a new platform. Azubu ultimatlely shut down in 2017, being replaced by Smashcast. Many prizes for Esports are still believed to be outstanding from Azubu also.
DailyMotion was launched in the living room of Olivier Poitrey in 2005, with the French government quickly investing in the platform, before Orange acquired a 49% stake in the company for around €62 million. Now available in 43 countries worldwide and owned by Vivendi, DailyMotion has had a series of issues to overcome over the years, with a judge having found the platform liable for copyright infringement in 2007, stating that they were a hosting provider, rather than a publisher. Meanwhile, the platform was permanently blocked in Russia in 2017 as a result of them violating copyright laws in the country, with such legal issues having had a negative effect on their reputation. However, Esports remains a key component of their operation, with streams surrounding CS:GO, Battlefield 4 and League of Legends regularly being uploaded.