Facebook is Releasing a Dedicated Gaming App to Challenge Twitch, YouTube
Despite slow growth compared to its competitors, Facebook Gaming is not out of the ring yet. Facebook announced that they will be releasing a standalone gaming app which will enable users to watch and create gaming livestreams.
Apart from casual games and community functions, the app will be primarily used to host all the gaming streams that are usually found under the Facebook Gaming sub-site.
Surprisingly, Facebook claims that there will be no ads for now - monetisation will rely purely on the existing system, which allows viewers to purchase a currency called 'stars' to donate to streamers.
No word yet if Facebook will eventually move all gaming streams off our timelines and make them accessible via the app only. If so, that would certainly address the many complaints some Facebook users have regarding unwanted streams plaguing their timelines via share spamming. However, this move might also cause Facebook to lose appeal towards streamers, who enjoy the built-in integration with their social media pages.
It will be interesting to see if the introduction of a dedicated app will help or hinder the growth of Facebook Gaming, especially since competitors like YouTube Gaming have already shut down their dedicated app last year. In the meantime, Twitch is still thriving with the majority of viewership and big-name streamers on their side.
The Facebook Gaming app will be available for Android starting today, with an iOS version still pending approval for Apple.