Even since the launch of Twitch in 2011, live streaming has become an increasingly important part of the gaming landscape. Beyond just video games, this relationship has expanded to reach other forms of entertainment and even features heavily in some mainstream movies and television shows. As far as it’s come, innovations never stop, with interesting implications for the future of how streaming will evolve.
In the video gaming space, Twitch is no longer the only name when it comes to streaming. YouTube has also dipped its toes in the water, but so far, none have been able to dethrone the king. According to Twitch Tracker, Twitch maintains a seven-day average of around 2.5 million viewers, with each year bringing a continual uptick in usage.
One recent development that Twitch viewers have loved is a growing focus on synchronized viewing. This allows users on popular programs like Discord or Kast to view streams simultaneously from within a private chat channel. This essentially creates a kind of hangout spot, kind of like watching TV next to each other, only with friends who can be located on the other side of the world.
Upscaling is another technology that has been taking off in recent years, demonstrated directly in gaming with technologies like Nvidia’s DLSS. Streaming systems are also adopting support for these systems, allowing users to receive higher-quality content at a lower bandwidth cost.
In video games like Cyberpunk 2077, this technology manifests as higher-resolution images and better frame rates, both of which could also appear in video streaming when these systems take hold. This could be especially important when VR streaming appears, thanks to a need for higher frame rates to avoid feelings of motion sickness.
Another recent innovation that is tied to both technology and streaming culture is an improved level of interactivity. Though streaming has always included a degree of back and forth, innovations and types of included games raise this potential to new heights.
Streaming helps foster relationships and create a feeling that is much more personal than what older systems embrace. Online casinos take this approach by offering live play on their games, where at-home players are catered to by physically streamed dealers in blackjack, baccarat, and more. In this way, they fuse at-home convenience with the feel of traditional casinos to create an experience beyond what is offered with older digital solutions.
The basis for this form of streaming has roots in live sports, which have long been tied to casino betting. Karamba Casino takes and evolves this route by offering live betting on a range of major sporting events. Accepting multiple currencies and offering bonuses via online systems again extends traditional options into new frontiers, with further benefits like access from anywhere with mobile and laptop support pushing users into a new age.
In terms of coming technology, some of the biggest modern advancements have come from the arrival and growing support of 4K virtual reality streams and devices. Though these are currently not officially supported, the groundwork is being laid for a new generation of realism and involvement.
When it arrives, this high-tech approach could let viewers take a virtual seat next to streamers, hanging out in real rooms as they watch gameplay unfold. Combined with streaming with friends, this approach could near-perfectly match the feel of playing next to each other, like an amped-up form of synchronized viewing and game sharing.
Also, a matter of when is the continual lowering of barriers to entry thanks to decreasing costs. Over time, internet plans, streaming hardware, and viewing systems all become cheaper, meaning what could break the bank today could be easy to get started with tomorrow.
“Ready for streaming: smiling in front of” (CC BY 2.0) by verchmarco
With streaming so popular in today’s entertainment zeitgeist, there’s no direction for it to go other than up. While it will inevitably hit a plateau like all other forms of entertainment, we’re still years away from seeing where this plateau might lie.
Until then, there’s never been a better time to get on board, and with modern and coming innovations, tomorrow is going to be more exciting than ever.