Streaming

A collection of 5 posts

Mixer launches updated homepage, improved clips, notification experiences

Max Miceli for Dot Esports:

Mixer released a few changes to its platform today, including a redesigned homepage, ad breaks, and higher quality emotes. The initiative comes about half a year after the platform pinned down popular content creators shroud and Ninja for exclusive streaming rights deals.

Some great quality of life changes and major updates to the platform. I’ve thought Mixer’s overall design was solid for a while, this refines what was working before.

The new homepage design doesn’t reinvent the wheel but does put emphasis on featured creators in a unique way. Hopefully this will surface a number of creators that weren’t getting attention before. I love the look of the big featured player at the top of the screen in relation to the creator’s name, title, etc and the carousel of other streams below it is nice.

The spacing between the streams and the categories are nice, it’s easy to scan through while looking for something to watch and adding in better clips support and clearer notifications is a big help too.

Twitch is launching Hype Train feature this week

Bijan Stephen for The Verge:

Hype is important on Twitch. That’s why the company is gamifying it with a new feature called Hype Train, launching this week. If you donate enough to a partnered or affiliate channel, you’ll see a bar pop up above chat, which will give donators rewards as it fills.

This sounds like a cool idea. While I understand the feature will be limited in a beta, I wonder how long it’ll be until creators are given the option of uploading their own emotes rather than use the ones designed by Twitch.

Mixer should be everywhere

It’s been an exciting week for Mixer — one of Twitch’s rivals in the streaming space. In a week that saw major streamers like Shroud and Gothalion jump ship, it’s become clear that this is just the beginning of a long battle between the two services, which is super exciting to see. With that in mind, there’s a big challenge that Mixer has to face sooner than later.

Twitch is everywhere. No matter where I want to watch — phone, TV and/or console, computer, etc — there’s a way to do so effortlessly. On the other hand, Mixer is painfully difficult to watch if you’re doing so anywhere other than a computer or phone. This is a problem when I’m at home because I have little interest in sitting in front of my computer to watch a stream or on my couch staring at my phone.

Mixer has an app available for iOS, Android, and Xbox but if they’re serious about this whole thing — and it certainly seems like they are — they need to be everywhere. The iOS app strangely supports Chromecast but lacks AirPlay and not everyone has an Xbox. As Gothalion said earlier today, Mixer isn’t an Xbox only platform but, to me, it sure feels like it based on the availability of apps and the user experience the available ones provide.

AirPlay on the iOS app, Apple and Android TV apps, app for the PS4 and Switch, etc. It’s a big list and this stuff takes time but this is Microsoft we’re talking about here. If anyone has the horsepower to make this happen, it’s them. Honestly, what good are all these big new streamers using the service if you can’t watch them?

Shroud signs deal to stream exclusively on Mixer

Brendan Sinclair for GamesIndustry.biz:

Mixer has signed away another big Twitch livestreamer. A couple months after Tyler “Ninja” Blevins committed to the Microsoft streaming platform, Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek announced today that he too has reached a deal to exclusively stream gameplay and video through Mixer.

Wow. I’m legit stunned.

I think I’m more shocked about this news than when Ninja moved over. When he left Twitch, I felt that Shroud was poised to take that proverbial “top spot” on the platform. Now, with him moving over as well, I have no idea.

While it’s definitely a surprise, this is good news for everyone involved—save for maybe Twitch—as it’ll continue to encourage healthy competition between the two platforms and hopefully help streamers grow on both Twitch and Mixer.

You have to wonder who might be next.

New look for Twitch

Twitch's old look and new one by COLLINS and Twitch
Twitch's old look (left) and new one (right) by COLLINS and Twitch

The subtle adjustments to the glitch logo are nice fine and I like the updated logomark more than the original, which — as someone who really liked the old logo — I never thought I’d say. I think it’s the consistent border and distances in the open letters (W, C, T, etc) that’s really selling it for me. The larger radius on the button corners and circular pills for tags are a nice touch that I feel modernizes the look. I also like the new typeface (Roobert) but I think they’ll need to make adjustments to weights (ie: the sidebar “followed channels” etc) throughout the site.

The new purple is nice, particularly in the dark version of the website, but I’ll miss the previous one. It would be nice to see them use a combination of the two. Speaking of dark mode, while the dark palette of the site looks fine, the light version feels… off. Maybe too much white space? Weird contrast with the shading of the sidebar? I can’t quite put my finger on it but something about it doesn’t gel like the previous version did. That said, I almost exclusively use the dark version and I’d have to assume many other users are the same. Still, I’m glad it’s something they offer to those that want or need it.

I know they’ve already said this is only the beginning of the work they’re doing but I hope they have some work planed on the overall user experience of the Twitch website. The navigation still feels cluttered, items are hidden, the dashboard is still all over the place, panels are hard to organize and display effectively, discoverability of channels still isn’t very good, etc.

I’m into the new look. Next, I’d like to see them tackle deeper UX issues.