YouTube unveils live-streaming service

After making its mark with pre-recorded videos, YouTube takes business live

YouTube is expanding its video offerings, launching a live-streaming service to complement its catalog of recorded videos.

Executives late last week took the wraps off YouTube Live, which integrates live-streaming capabilities into the YouTube platform.

YouTube also launched a new page where users can go to find listings of live events.

As of Monday afternoon, viewers could watch live games from Indian Premier League Cricket and a Stanford University lecture on the impact of the tobacco industry on global health.

At this point, not just anyone can live stream video on the site. The company has worked that out with a select list of partners. However, YouTube is hoping to grow that list in the coming months.

"We'll also start gradually rolling out our live streaming beta platform, which will allow certain YouTube partners with accounts in good standing to stream live content on YouTube," wrote YouTube's Joshua Siegel, a product manager, and Christopher Hamilton, a product marketing manager, in a blog post. "The goal is to provide thousands of partners with the capability to live stream from their channels in the months ahead."

Just last week, reports hit that YouTube is in the midst of a site overhaul. The video-sharing website is trying to position itself to better handle the age of Internet-connected televisions, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the matter. YouTube is reorganizing its home page around "channels," or topics, such as sports and arts.

The Journal also reported that the website is working to include about 20 "premium channels" that would showcase five to 10 hours of professionally produced, original programming each week.

A source close to Google told Computerworld that YouTube is working on changes to the site, but the company is not planning a big redesign. Instead, the changes are expected to be implemented over months or even the next year.

"You won't wake up overnight and see a new YouTube," the source said.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed. Her e-mail address is sgaudin@computerworld.com.

Read more about web 2.0 and web apps in Computerworld's Web 2.0 and Web Apps Topic Center.

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Sharon Gaudin

Computerworld (US)
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