Watch me make make fart sounds for hearts – Meerkat, Periscope and social real time streaming
Despite the fact I’ve just had a baby and have been somewhat busy with the new little man over the past month, even I couldn’t miss the buzz of the Meerkat app at this year’s SXSW. But with the public release of Periscope by Twitter on Thursday, the app has some phenomenal competition.
If you’ve managed to miss all this, basically, they are both social real time broadcasting apps, allowing users to stream video from their phone in real time in an online social media driven setting. Time.com has done an awesome job of summing up the differences between the two here.
For me, it’s Periscope. Since the launch of the app on Thursday, and being Twitter’s own offering, I’ve been noseying at people’s videos. I don’t think it’s necessarily a better app than Meerkat. I don’t prefer one over the other, but Twitter has restricted some of Meerkat’s access to certain features of Twitter and I can only see that continuing over time. These apps both rely hugely on integrating with Twitter and the integration is bound to end up being notable better on Twitter’s own offering. So that’s my reason for choosing Periscope.
Passing Fad or the Next Big Thing?
Over the past few years, I’ve heard Instagram, Vine and Snapchat all labelled as fads. Millions of users later, they’re successful platforms used by brands too. So I think it would be really stupid of anyone to declare social live streaming as a fad.
Both apps are being used by people streaming their lunch, people sharing cute stuff (the Internet loves a puppy, right?) and some weirder stuff. I just opened Periscope and the first thing I saw was a stream called:
Watch me make fart sounds for hearts.
I kid you not. And, of course, I clicked. And sure enough there was someone making fart noises with his hand. And predictable, plenty of viewers giving him “love” hearts.
Witty, of course. But I don’t think the future of real time streaming is farting sounds. What I’m excited about is the people sharing breaking news via the app as well. That’s an exciting prospect for journalists and for citizen journalists alike. Imagine being able to tune into to something exciting or shocking or ground breaking that’s happening right now. Imagine being able to watch that uncensored through one of these apps. It’s a pretty thrilling prospect.
And what about brands? Could we see more brands launching products via Periscope or Meerkat? Can we expect to see breaking news and announcements from our favourite brands? Are we going to see creative content from businesses that lends itself to the live streaming format?
I hope so.
Now, excuse me. I’m going to go watch people have lunch and make fart sounds until my son wakes up…