YouTube Gunning for Twitch With Gaming-Focused Overhaul - Report

Google-owned video giant will reportedly announce a major, gaming-focused overhaul of its livestreaming platform at E3.

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Online video giant YouTube is planning to re-launch its dedicated livestreaming platform to focus specifically on gaming and eSports. That's according to multiple sources "within the streaming industry" speaking with The Daily Dot.

Last year, the Google-owned YouTube reportedly attempted to buy livestreaming giant Twitch, but the deal ultimately fell through due to antitrust concerns. After that, online retail giant Amazon stepped in to buy the platform for nearly $1 billion. YouTube's livestreaming re-launch, according to sources, will allow the site to compete more directly with Twitch.

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"Gaming and eSports in particular are going to be a big driving force for the new-look YouTube Live," one source said. "There'll be huge opportunities for established streamers and organizations soon and I would say that the record numbers of eSports viewers are only going to grow when Google starts promoting and partnering with these events."

YouTube's livestreaming efforts date back to 2010, when the site broadcast cricket matches from the Indian Premier League. The site regularly hosts livestreams of all sorts; past live programming has included the League of Legends Championship Series and Geoff Keighley's Video Game Awards in December 2014.

According to another source speaking with The Daily Dot, YouTube has created a "formidable team" of around 50 engineers to help re-launch the site's livestreaming platform.

That "is a pretty big statement of intent," one source added. "The time is right as well, with Twitch moving into other areas such as music and so on. Google doesn't want to be too far behind in the arms race."

Finally, The Daily Dot's sources said YouTube may make an official announcement regarding its updated livestreaming platform at E3 in June.

YouTube declined to comment when approach by The Daily Dot. We've also reached out to YouTube for comment. We'll update this post with anything we hear back.

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