It was originally announced back in June, and now YouTube’s answer to Twitch is finally here! Say hello to YouTube Gaming—a YouTube built for gamers.
With this release, YouTube hasn’t just added a new category: YouTube Gaming means a brand new website, along with both Android and iOS mobile apps. YouTube aims to keep you connected with the games, players, and culture that matter to you, with videos, live streams, income opportunities, and the biggest community of gamers on the web all in one place.
Your audience is waiting!
YouTube Gaming may have its own website, unique watch pages, and mobile app, but at its core it’s still powered by YouTube—which is a great thing, because it means built-in audiences. When you go live on YouTube Gaming for the very first time, the YouTube audience you’ve worked so hard to build up over the years will be right there waiting!
Streaming in 3, 2, 1 . . .
Before today, it took roughly 12 steps to set up a live stream on YouTube. That all changes with YouTube’s new Live Streaming platform. Just three steps and you’re live:
- Download and set up your encoder using the Stream Name/Key and Server URL.
- Enter your stream’s info (title, category, thumbnail, monetization).
- Go live!
Encoders and stream keys
If you’ve never streamed before, you’ll need an encoder to do the heavy lifting. YouTube has a great help article about encoders they recommend and platforms they support.
Once you have an encoder ready to go, at the bottom of your Live Dashboard you’ll find your stream key, which tells the encoder which channel to broadcast on.
If you’re not sure where to input the server URL and stream key, check the documentation for your encoder.
If you’re gonna be streaming for hours on end, you might as well get paid for it, right? During the setup process, you can opt in to monetize your stream with pre-roll ads, which will roll before a viewer watches your stream.
Note: Live streams are subject to the same copyright rules as videos you upload to YouTube. For example, if your live stream includes music but you don’t own the rights to that music, you could get hit with copyright claims and/or strikes. So be careful! (And be sure to read our post about avoiding copyright problems.)
If you’ve opted in to monetization, you’ll also have two additional options available once your stream begin: Fan Funding and mid-roll ad cues.
- Fan Funding: For channels in eligible countries, Fan Funding allows viewers to make donations throughout your stream. Fullscreen takes no cut whatsoever from your donations, so all that money is yours! (For more on Fan Funding, including eligibility requirements, click here.)
- Mid-roll ad cues: The “Play ad” button on your Live Dashboard lets you run a mid-roll ad at any point in your live stream. Need to take a quick break from gaming to stretch your legs? Play an ad to earn a bit of extra income—just don’t forget to tell your viewers you’ll be right back!
If you’re just looking to dive in to some gaming content, the YouTube Gaming homepage features live streams, past videos, and quick access to your favorite games.
What are you waiting for? It’s time to stream on YouTube Gaming! Once you’re live, tweet us at @FullscreenNet and we’ll do our best to promote your stream!