Dramatic technological advancements, including the increasing implementation of AI-powered solutions, the cloud, and blockchain, are changing the way in which we acquire information and entertain ourselves. A spectacular 80% of people would actually prefer to consume content from live videos rather than from blogs. Media and entertainment firms, healthcare companies, marketing agencies, and other businesses increasingly approach their audiences by broadcasting videos in real-time. If you are considering the possibility of boosting sales and making profits from this current trend, you might be interested in reading this piece. In it, Andersen’s experts provide insights on promising live streaming solutions and trends and suggest tips for streaming app development.
What is a live streaming app?
Briefly, such solutions allow audiences to view video content on their internet-connected devices at the same time that it is recorded and broadcast by streamers. The technology comes in useful when covering the news and various events, following gamers, promoting businesses, holding meetings, etc. The most prominent platforms providing for these activities are giants such as YouTube and Facebook Live, Twitch, which is intended for following gamers, Livestream, Instagram Live, and also comparative newcomers such as TikTok and Periscope that have been experiencing dizzying rises.
According to Grand View Research, the live streaming market size worldwide is currently demonstrating an impressive annual growth of 21% and surpassed $59 billion in 2021. Such an increase is stimulated by the continuing excitement for social media, as well as substantially increased quality and security ensured by recent technologies.
Types of live streaming solutions
The majority of current solutions fall into one of the following categories:
- Live broadcasting apps allow for viewing videos that are currently being recorded elsewhere by streamers. Twitch, which is in active use by game lovers, renowned brands such as Facebook Live, Livestream, and relatively recent Periscope fall under this group.
- Video-on-demand solutions, on the contrary, give access to content at any time with the possibility to pause and rewind it. The service is often subscription-based and is provided by such platforms as Netflix, which is the world’s largest solution of its kind, VPlayed, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, etc.
- Apps for audio streaming enable users to listen to audio directly on the platform without bothering with downloading it. Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, and other outstanding solutions belong to this group.
- Apps with TV broadcasting features provide online user access to TV channels. This capability is often embedded into VOD solutions, such as in the case of Hulu, YouTube TV, etc.
How to build a live streaming app?
To build a well-designed solution that will be a success, consider taking the following steps.
Start out by understanding current user needs
This can be done by conducting market research, including interviews and surveys, and outlining profiles of your solution’s eventual users. By knowing the audience’s preferences, needs, and pain points, you’ll occupy the market niche that will bring you the highest profits.
Consider monetizing your product
It is no secret that the success of live streaming solutions is largely built on choosing the right monetization strategy or, which is more often the case, combining several strategies. The most frequent options are launching a paid app, relying on the freemium business model, or having in-app advertising in place. The choice depends on the solution type to a great extent, e.g. monetizing an app for promoting a healthy lifestyle will require a different approach than a game streaming platform.
Choose a reliable development company
The vendor should be able not only to create an outstanding solution from scratch but also to maintain it after the launch. Note that professional live streaming solution companies normally showcase extensive portfolios with client feedback on their websites and are highly rated on trustworthy market review platforms such as Clutch, GoodFirms, etc.
Elicit and document app requirements
Let your vendor’s professional Business Analysts draw up a Software Requirements Specification, Vision and Scope document, and other deliverables needed to thoroughly plan the solution’s architecture and design. Be mindful of such particularities as the app’s bandwidth capabilities, the need for cloud storage, the choice of a content delivery network, and the most suitable platform, i.e. opting for an Android-based, iOS-based, or cross-platform solution.
Draw up intuitive and eye-catching UI/UX design
The vendor’s skillful designers will deliver schematic wireframes and illustrative mockups that will allow for successful and scalable streaming app development. A responsive and inimitable interface where all the elements are harmoniously placed according to heuristic principles will ensure the solution skyrockets.
Develop a compelling MVP
Designing a product containing the minimum required set of features that are critical for the proper app functioning will help you speed up its market launch and obtain prompt feedback from its first users. This will allow you to improve and upgrade the solution up until its final version. Needless to say that a solid QA process must be ensured.
Launch a marketing campaign
Make sure that the audience recognizes your brand by turning to seasoned marketing experts to advertise your app across social networks and other channels. Your vendor’s specialists can help you with that, starting even before the final solution is released.
Upgrade and support the solution
By analyzing user behavior on your platform and their reviews, you will get valuable insights into the app’s performance and be able to eliminate bugs and implement upgrades.
MVP features for successful streaming app development
As a rule, most live streaming solutions include the following essential functionality:
- Creating a profile and signing in grants users access to a customized profile that is tailored to their whereabouts and tastes. Generally, viewers’ privileges vary based on their subscription plans. Providing a signing-in option via social media profiles will enhance the user experience. Another helpful feature is creating a watchlist for arranging videos in accordance with their preferences.
- Filtering based on genre, popularity, keywords, etc. Consider integrating the app with GPS tools to ensure increased personalization of services.
- Ensuring live streaming via a reliable server involving the use of protocols, e.g. RTMP.
- Sending notifications to viewers in a timely manner with details of upcoming events.
- Leaving comments on videos to enlarge user engagement and boost traffic.
- Holding live chats with broadcasters that can be integrated into your solution via third-party APIs. To get access to this feature, users often need to purchase a subscription, which contributes to app monetization. Efficient chat moderation is ensured with the help of AI-powered tools.
- Tailoring quality with the consideration of user bandwidth. This is fundamental for client retention as, for the majority of viewers, quality is a determining factor.
- Alternating broadcasting possibilities to make the content available to a limited number of chosen viewers or in a particular region.
- Assigning ratings, which allows the users to make informed choices and increases the solution’s overall reputation.
In addition to the above functionality, your app can include the following advanced features that will ensure it has a competitive edge:
- Localization and the possibility to switch languages to ensure the maximum possible outreach.
- Embedding various payment options by using third-party APIs.
- Providing a screen sharing feature essential for Gaming, eLearning, and other spheres.
- Providing users with recommendations tailored to their browsing history and viewing habits.
- Offline viewing which requires increased cloud storage capabilities.
- Making donations to broadcasters; this is a method of paid interaction of the audience with their favorite streamers and involves the embedding of analytics and payment tools.
- Providing for an admin panel to seamlessly manage the platform, upload and remove files, monitor payments, and more.
Streaming app development with Andersen: the most illustrative use cases
Andersen is one of the reliable live streaming solution companies with a proven track record and expertise in streaming app development. Some of our successful projects are presented below.
Designing an entertainment platform
Employing our top-notch expertise, Andersen’s seasoned UI/UX designers managed to organize the complex logic of a large entertainment streaming platform. Our specialists chose the theme of space and placed all the elements in an engaging and seamless fashion to meet the expectations of millions of viewers. To successfully complete the task, we conducted a detailed product analysis, created wireframes, and performed thorough usability testing.
Developing a TV streaming app
Working for a large Telecom provider, Andersen’s skilled Front-end developers created a highly personalized solution for broadcasting TV shows, series, movies, and other content to viewers in the US. All its features from profile creation through selecting subscription plans to interacting with third-party platforms are extensively tailored to user needs.
Implementing a large-scale TV streaming project
Andersen’s tech experts participated in the development, launch, and support of these complex Android-based and iOS-based solutions for viewing more than three hundred TV channels in supreme quality via various devices. The technology stack employed by our specialists included Swift5, Firebase, Kotlin, etc. In spite of its convoluted architecture, the resulting product is extremely elegant and visually attractive; it includes advanced VOD features with the possibility to effectively manage and download files.
Creating an app for streaming sports events
With a technology stack based on Angular and Node, Andersen’s developers created a platform for covering sports events and enabling fans to benefit from a broad selection of content. In addition, the solution is embedded with venue marketing features, and thus, it ensures the maximum return on investment for the broadcaster.
Adroitly built live streaming solutions ensure a stellar experience and boost sales helping companies grow. They are thus exceedingly popular among both viewers and businesses. Availing yourself of Andersen’s solid knowledge base and extensive expertise, you will surely be able to bring your boldest business ideas into realization and reach a new level of digital development. Therefore, do not hesitate to reach our experts for a detailed consultation.
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