YouTube’s live offering took a big step forward today, with the announcement that access to the feature will soon be available to a large number of its partners. While YouTube Live was previously only available to a handful of handpicked channels and partners, the feature will now be rolled out to any YouTube channel in good standing with more than 1,000 subscribers.
The opening up of YouTube Live to more creators comes two years after it first announced the feature. But it also is being rolled out after YouTube has had some serious stress testing on the product, including live streaming of the 2012 Olympics and the big Red Bull dude-jumping-from-space thing.
Now open to more users, the ability to stream live video could change the way that YouTube creators communicate with audiences, as they’re finally able to step beyond the current on-demand paradigm of uploading videos to the site. Now, they’ll be able to schedule live events and launch impromptu live streams to be shared with their subscribers.
To determine eligibility, creators should check their Account Features page for an “Enable” button to sign up for Live. YouTube creators who qualify will get live transcoding in the cloud and the ability to stream multiple camera angles.
YouTube, meanwhile, will take care of all the hard work on the back end to get those live streams to as many devices as possible. YouTube uses adaptive bit-rate streaming to power the feature, giving viewers access to the high-quality video available, regardless of whether they’re watching on a PC, mobile phone or tablet.