Microsoft Beam – Twitch’s Top Competitor

Microsoft Beam – Twitch’s Top Competitor


Microsoft recently acquired Beam which is a live streaming platform that’s competing against the top live streaming service Twitch. What makes Beam stand out from the rest is the fact that it allows Xbox One and Windows OS users to interact with their favorite streamers, something which is entirely different from what Twitch offers. In order for Beam to surpass Twitch, Microsoft keeps rolling out major updates to the live streaming service and today Microsoft improved the overall latency of the service.

Beam users were already enjoying low latency times but now Microsoft enhanced the max bitrate to 10MBs and brought support for 60FPS streams that can render up to 2560 x 1440 resolutions. The major patch didn’t only include performance enhancements, but the user interface and homepage were updated as well. The UI now features a brand new logo design and the emoticon auto completion feature. Flash was removed and replaced with a HTML5 player that provides users with better VOD quality and browser support.

Beam is taking the streaming world by storm but it still has a long way to go until it can reach Twitch’s 100 million active user base. Nonetheless, seeing how much attention Microsoft is paying to Beam and how many major updates Microsoft is rolling out we can expect Beam’s user base to increase substantially over time. Right now, the only downside about Beam is that users can only log in through a Microsoft account or their Xbox Live handle but that might change over time. If Microsoft manages to attract popular streamers such as “imaqtipie” the streaming platform will surely bow up.

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  1. Bleh, I can’t stand Microsoft’s sign in system. It’s too cumbersome.

    Edit: Holy crap, did MS diehards show up and downvote everyone with criticism?

  2. Are you sure use of that integration is required?

    Keep in mind that most existing streaming software isn’t equipped for connecting with the FTL protocol. I’m not even sure if OBS supports VP8.

  3. I like the site redesign looks pretty good. But the number of channels and viewers is pretty small right now so they have a lot of catching up to do. I don’t mind the idea of using a microsoft account to sign in but Microsoft has the worst login compared to facebook and google. Half the time I log in you get redirected to some blank white screen and some url with 300 characters and I have to go back and refresh the page before I’m actually “signed in”. Doesn’t matter if I’m using firefox, chrome or edge.

    On the other hand, if the sign in process was much like it is for microsoft business platforms like azure, I’d be happy as a clam.