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YouTube Launches Gaming Site and App, Competes With Twitch

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YouTube is launching its dedicated gaming site and app, YouTube Gaming, at 1PM Eastern today, creating a strong rival for Amazon's Twitch. YouTube first announced the service back in June, saying that it would debut sometime in the summer. The site will be accessible online from any country where YouTube operates, and through iOS and Android apps in the U.S. and U.K.

The big challenge for YouTube was to upgrade its live video service so that players didn't need to schedule a live event ahead of time. The live streaming supports 60fps video, HTML5 playback, DVR controls, and the ability to turn live streams into on-demand YouTube clips. Competitor Twitch lacks the ability to rewind during a live broadcast, something YouTube Gaming offers. However, YouTube streams will stop if unlicensed music is played, something that's not a problem with Twitch. The improved live streaming tools are currently in beta.

By launching YouTube Gaming, YouTube says it's ending the fragmented experience where gamers go to one site for live streams and another for on-demand clips.

"We wanted to create a one-stop shop for all gaming content," YouTube's head of gaming, Ryan Wyatt, said in an interview with the BBC.

YouTube says the area will offer over 250,000 game pages and even more gaming channels. Uploaded gaming videos will be automatically sorted by game title and content creator. 

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