YouTube is looking to acquire Twitch.TV, the popular video game streaming service, for $1 billion in an all-cash offer. The deal will be disclosed in the upcoming week, according to sources from Vanity.
The deal has been worked on for some time and YouTube is preparing to make their biggest acquisition since the inception of the company, who were bought by Google in 2006 for $1.65 billion, YouTube has been moving to a more independent branch of Google in the past few years.
YouTube: Rulers of Video
YouTube is already the King of video content on the Web, with the overwhelming majority of traffic going to the Website. The difference between YouTube and Twitch.TV is real time streaming, instead of editing videos streamed over the Web.
Twitch.TV offers a different kind of experience and video game fans have taken to the Website with open arms, allowing them to watch hundreds of pro-players show off their skills in solo match-ups to thousands of fans.
YouTube wants to get in on the new trend, after failing to get their own streaming platform off the ground. The YouTube streaming is built into the Website, but it has not received as much usage as Twitch.TV.
The move is already suspected to be stopped by the US Justice Department and YouTube is getting regulators ready to make sure the deal goes through. Twitch.TV is YouTube’s only real competition in the video game video market, even though it attracts different types of audiences.
YouTube is full of personalities from different genres, but the most popular YouTubers are involved in video gaming in some way. PewDiePie is far and away the most popular YouTube personality, but there are music channels and short-video channels like Smosh, Nigahiga and Jenna Marbles.
Twitch.TV is different, it does not have anything apart from video games. Sometimes board games make it to the front-page, but there are not as widely received as video game streams, especially from pro-players who attract thousands of viewers per session.
The video gaming craze has made Twitch.TV become a prime spot for gamers. Riot Games, Valve and other popular eSports companies have started using Twitch.TV to stream all their biggest competitions, as they know it is the place to get the most eyeballs.
League of Legends is the fan favorite on Twitch.TV at the moment, regularly drawing in over 100,000 viewers at any time and much more when Riot Games or TSM (Team SoloMid) start streaming, boosting numbers to over 500,000 at peak points.
YouTube Wants a Bite
YouTube knows this might be the future of viewing content online, even though YouTube has its place for other genres, video games is starting to become more of a Twitch.TV thing and casual viewers go onto YouTube to watch edited videos.
The live experience could be worth billions to YouTube and they are prepared to pay for it tooth and nail. The $1 billion deal might just be the first in a battle to see how steep Google’s subsidiary will go to keep the future in their hands.
Companies like MLG will most likely go down under if Twitch.TV is acquired by YouTube, the extra funding would pay for better servers and more engineers to fix back-end problems with self-hosting, improving performance.
Future of Twitch.TV
Twitch.TV is already in a weird position, the PS4 and Xbox One both integrate the platform into their games, allowing anyone to become a video creator easily. This could flood the market with console gamers who do not know how to stream and maintain quality, but for now it appears to be fine.
If YouTube take over, we will most likely see more copyright issues taken seriously. Most streamers play copyrighted music throughout their stream, but due to it being live they don’t get hit by any takedowns, something YouTube will want to fix.
The deal should go through sometime this week, according to various sources. We await the official announcement.