YouTube takes on TV with live stream expansion

youtube_logo_standard_againstwhiteYouTube is taking on linear TV by opening up live streaming options for the first time to any channel that has more than 1,000 subscribers.

The major expansion follows the introduction of live streaming functionality on the site in 2011, which has to now only been available to selected partners to air tentpole events such as the Coachella music festival coverage, and Felix Baumgartner’s record-breaking skydive.

YouTube said that any channel with enough subscribers that are in “good standing” – ie follow the YouTube community guidelines – can now apply for live streaming with the functionality to roll out to these channels in the coming weeks.

The features offered by the new streaming options include real-time transcoding in the cloud, with YouTube to make streams instantly available in all resolutions and device formats. Multiple camera angles, closed captions, ad inserts can also be used.

The news, which coincides with Google’s I/O developers conference in San Francisco, follows the launch last week of a subscription channels pilot for its site, with 53 initial participant networks kicking-off the scheme.

The new pay channels carry subscription fees starting at US$0.99 (€0.77) per-month and all have a 14-day free-trial, with many also carrying discounted yearly rates.

Tags: Google, YouTube