Facebook to launch gaming app for creating and watching live gameplay

The social media giant is trying to rival Twitch and YouTube

Facebook is reportedly launching a new gaming mobile app on April 20th in an attempt to take on YouTube and Twitch.

The New York Times reports that the app is designed for creating and watching live gameplay, which is a fast-growing sector. The social media giant aims to make its move into the video game business with the free app.

The app, which is reportedly called ‘Facebook Gaming,’ is going to first be released on Android, and will later launch on iOS once Apple approves the app.

Facebook initially planned to launch the app in June, but sped up its plans as people are spending more time on entertainment amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Investing in gaming in general has become a priority for us because we see gaming as a form of entertainment that really connects people,” the social media giant told the New York Times.

The app includes casual games and links to gaming communities, but is largely focused on getting people to watch and create live game streams.

One of the features of the app called ‘Go Live’ allows players to upload streams of other mobile games onto the app and share them to a Facebook page. This differs from Twitch’s model because it requires users to download third-party apps to connect their phone to a computer.

The app does not include any advertisements, and instead relies on making money through commission from sums of money sent to streamers by viewers.

The company has been testing the app in Southeast Asia and Latin America for the past 18 months, and is now looking to expand its launch. MobileSyrup has reached out to Facebook to determine if the app is being released in Canada as part of the April 20th launch.

Facebook has not exactly been making waves in the gaming industry since its peak FarmVille days from years ago, but, it seems that the company is trying to solidify its place in the industry.

Source: New York Times