Twitter is improving its live video functionality with the launch of a new API that allows media publishers to post broadcasts on the social platform more easily. The tool also empowers brands to produce higher-quality content by linking in with video editing and professional broadcasting equipment.
News of the API was first leaked last week, but tech news site TechCrunch has now revealed that it will launch today with several API partners, including Wirecast, Telestream and Livestream Switcher. These partners won’t actually be creating engaging content but will help publishers get their live clips up and running on Twitter.
The API is believed to be similar to Facebook’s own iteration, which launched nearly 12 months ago as a means to connecting professional equipment such as desktop editing software, editing boards, large video cameras and satellite vans to the social sphere.
Twitter previously relied on the Periscope Producer functionality for live content, but it was not a complete solution and was deemed lacking for professional bloggers and other content creators. Broadcasters will now be able to use the new API to plug in their equipment and access a highly customisable interface with useful tools and features.
The move by Twitter is the latest in its attempts to take advantage of the higher advertising revenues associated with video. The social giant finally allowed users to host live broadcasts from within its main mobile app in December last year, and it appears to be positioning its platform as a more natural home for clips compared to its rivals, including Facebook and Snapchat.
Twitter’s focus on video also raises questions about Periscope, which used to be the central hub for video functionality before downloads of the dedicated app tailed off last year. It is possible that more livestream and broadcast browsing features could make their way over to the main app in the near future as it looks to lure more content creators.
Instagram has also rolled out a new live video function, and users will now be able to save broadcasts following a stream. Content published on Instagram Live previously disappeared, which may have made users more hesitant to post on the platform during an important moment. They will now have the option to store clips by accessing a save button in the upper-right corner of the screen.