During Facebook’s F8 developer conference keynote, Founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg announced a Facebook Live API. This API will allow developers to build apps that allow you to stream live from any camera, not just the one in your mobile phone.
After opening Facebook Live to iOS and Android users earlier this month, Zuckerberg says the response has been “pretty amazing”. He went on to say that people tend to watch live videos longer than normal video content and Facebook is seeing 10x the comments on a live video. For a content producer, that’s an incredibly important metric if you’re seeking engagement from your audience.
Zuckerberg says Facebook will continue to build out Live over the next five years and are adding a prominent Live tab to the interface to allow you to easily access people and pages who are currently live. He spoke to an example of a commenters on one of his posts who streamed her wedding live to her mother and friends across the country, who couldn’t make it. Sure there’s other platforms that you could have used to achieve this, but when the audience is already at Facebook, this makes Facebook Live a compelling option, possibly the best option to share content. By comparison, Twitter’s Periscope differs in a very important way Facebook Live streams are saved and made available after the event for replay.
“We’re seeing TV stars get bigger audiences on Live than they get on their TV shows”
After announcing to developers today, expect plenty of new Facebook apps that will allow you to stream live to Facebook using the camera in your laptop, or external webcam. For those with more professional setups with multi-cam setups lower 3rd etc, would now feed the mixed stream into a PC and broadcast it to the world. This means the expensive live streaming infrastructure required to offer your content to a billion people.
Don’t be surprised to see Facebook offer a professional tier for those TV networks who’d rather like to avoid building out their own infrastructure, or even those like ABCNews24 and SkyNews who’d like to tap into the massive audience at Facebook.
— Niv Dror ☄ (@Nivo0o0) April 12, 2016
The announcement for Facebook Live goes much further than the PC and mobile now, with drone maker DJI announced as one of the first 3rd party partners that are adding live streaming capability through the Facebook Live API. Zuckerberg demonstrated a DJI Phantom flying around the stage that was also streaming live to the world. Basically DJI owners just got a new feature for free – live streaming to the world.
Naturally Facebook leveraged their own Live Streaming platform for the keynote and will continue to do so for the F8 conference. Since the post went live 4 hours ago, its already attracted an impressive 1.965.529 Million views and is showing no sign of slowing down. These views seamlessly combine live and replay views and there’s already been 92,000 comments, 86,155 reactions and 9,355 shares.
If you missed it, its definitely worth watching as Zuckerberg also spoke about the Facebook roadmap for the next 5 to 10 years including new bots coming in Messenger and their vision for AR and VR in the future.