It wasn't long ago that Google launched YouTube Gaming, a clear effort to try to win gamers over from Twitch.tv. Last weekend Twitch held its first TwitchCon event and they fired right back at YouTube during it. Let's catch up on some of the news.
Twitch.tv (which is now owned by Amazon) is all about broadcasting gameplay. You can watch anything from huge e-sports competitions down to your friend trying out a game for the first time, but everything is captured live. That'll change in 2016 when Twitch starts allowing you to upload videos to the service.
Obviously YouTube already supports this, but why is is important? Think of it in terms of TV; some content is performed live and some is carefully edited before being show to an audience. For instance if you're making machinima you probably want to do lots of takes and then pick the best clips to string together into a show. You'd probably want to capture all your footage offline and then when you've carefully edited your video, only then release it to your audience.
In the nearer term, Twitch is going to let you set up playlists of clips that you've captured live, and you can set them up to play back when you're offline. That means your Twitch channel never has to be dead air. When you're not live you can air 're-runs' of your best material.
On a more technical note, Twitch is moving towards ditching Flash in favor of HTML5, although it's going to take a while, with a Q2 2016 target. Good news, I just wish it could happen sooner.
Playstation owners should be happy to learn that they're finally getting a proper Twitch app. Currently you can broadcast to Twitch from a Playstation 4, and you can watch other PS4 Twitch streams via Sony's "Live From Playstation" app but if you want to watch Twitch content from any other platform you're out of luck unless you want to wrestle with the PS4's web browser.
That'll change later this fall when the PS4, Playstation Vita and Playstation 3 all get a new Twitch app that "gives you the full Twitch experience" although they really mean the full Twitch viewing experience. Baked-in broadcasting to Twitch will still be limited to the PS4, but the PS3 and Vita will let you watch and interact with streams from anywhere.