<img src="http://tctechcrunch2011.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/qik.png" class="shot"Qik has announced that Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz have joined their growing list of investors, and taken seats on the board of advisors along with previous investors Marc Benioff, George Garrick, Arjun Gupta, Andreessen, and Horowitz.
Qik is a mobile video casting service that sees competition from Kyte, Flixwagon, and Livecast. To get a feel for the services we ran a test here at TechCrunch comparing Qik, Kyte, and Flixwagon, ignoring Livecast because we couldn’t get it to install correctly. In the end we determined that Kyte and Qik were the clear leaders in the space, giving the edge to Kyte for its superior audio quality.
What’s surprising is that Qik has been able to compete with Kyte without significant venture funding. Kyte on the other hand is sitting on nearly $25 million in venture capital. This suggests that Qik has found a relatively cheap way to outsource their bandwidth, whether they are hosting their streaming service in the cloud or using their own servers. It is a prime example of how start-ups can use web 2.0 technology to get off the ground, and start to build once they gain momentum.
Kyte is also backed by Nokia, which raises questions about how hard the company wants to open up options for viewing and recording via other phones, most importantly the iPhone. In fact, Qik has already released an unauthorized version of its software that will allow iPhone video recording on a jail-broken device, and is rumored to be readying a way to view Qik streams on the iPhone.