YouTube Live makes inroads into Twitch’s streaming domination

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A new report confirms that Twitch is still by far and away the leading streaming platform, but YouTube Live and, to a lesser extent, Mixer, are chipping away at its dominance.

The report into streaming in the first quarter of 2019, jointly written by Streamlabs and Newzoo, found that YouTube Live’s viewership rose to 24 per cent of Twitch’s viewership in that period. The report adds: “On average, live streamers on YouTube Gaming Live experience 26 more viewers per channel compared to Twitch.” And: “With 52 hours watched for an average stream, YouTube Gaming Live has the highest hours streamed to hours watched ratio compared to other platforms.”

But the report also made clear that Twitch still very much rules the streaming roost. It said: “Average concurrent viewers on Twitch increased 9% QoQ [Quarter on Quarter], ending Q1 with 1.25 million average CCV.” And overall, a total of 2.7 billion hours of Twitch streams were watched in the first quarter of 2019 – up 7 per cent quarter on quarter – compared to 651 million hours on YouTube Live and 89 million hours on Mixer.

The streaming report also analysed the most popular games across streaming platforms. Overall, Epic Games was the most-watched publisher on Twitch: a status it has held since the first quarter of 2018, although Riot Games narrowed the gap to the Fortnite publisher. But League of Legends was the most-watched game on Twitch, followed by Fortnite and Apex Legends. However, compared with the first quarter of 2018, Fortnite lost 10 per cent of its Twitch viewership in 2018 – which the report attributes to the rise of Apex Legends.

The report concluded: “Twitch is still the market leader by a significant amount — more than four times YouTube Gaming Live’s size — but YouTube Gaming Live is now seeing the same accelerated rate of growth that we first saw in 2016–2017. YouTube’s decision to merge YouTube Gaming Live and YouTube Gaming Live into one product seems to be working really well.”

In case you’ve never experienced either, You Tube Gaming Live can be visited here and Twitch here.

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Steve Boxer
Steve Boxer has been writing about videogames since the early 1990s. His first console was an Atari VCS, and he misspent most of his youth in the 1980s in the arcades. As well as for Green Man Gaming, he can be found writing for The Guardian, Empire, TechRadar and Pocket-Lint. He’s currently having trouble deciding whether his favourite console is his Xbox One X or his Switch, and plays a wide range of games, but especially RPGs (he loves a good JRPG) action-adventure titles, shooters of all descriptions and driving games. Follow him here.