What is Twitch ? Everything You Need to Know
Twitch streaming and video games have become synonymous over the past years and gave millions of gamers worldwide a chance to interact with each other while broadcasting their favorite game. But what is Twitch?
While it was almost unknown back in 2011, there are over 140 million active users on the platform in 2022, and that figure increases every day, and no one can ignore Twitch anymore.
In this guide, we’ll discuss everything from what Twitch is, the pros and cons of using it, how the content creators make money, and much more. So make sure to read until the end to know what Twitch is all about.
What is Twitch?
Launched in 2011, Twitch is a live streaming platform that enables its users to broadcast themselves playing video games. It has since become the go-to place for gamers around the world, with millions of people tuning in to watch broadcasters of all skill levels play their favorite games.
In addition to live streams, Twitch also features pre-recorded videos, highlights, and clips. And with a growing community of creators and viewers, it’s only getting better.
That’s not it; Twitch offers almost everything you can think of, from food channels to music to Q&A, and humorous channels. With over 11 million streaming channels on Twitch, we can say that it’s becoming an excellent alternative to YouTube.
Is Twitch Free to Use?
Twitch is a free-to-access service, regardless if you open a streamer or viewer account. That being said, you can link your credit or debit card and support your favorite creators with monthly subscriptions. These subscriptions allow you to get special perks like badges on your comments and more.
Apart from that, you can purchase “Bits” to support or cheer for a streamer, whether he’s playing well on your favorite game or if you just find him funny or appealing. As a reference, 100 “Bits” are the equivalent of US$1.
Lastly, back in 2016, Twitch Prime (which is today called Prime Gaming) was announced, which is associated with Amazon Prime. But what is Twitch gaming? Prime Gaming allows you to get everything included in Amazon Prime, as well as free games and exclusive in-game loot every month. But the subscription isn’t free – you’ll have to pay $14.99 monthly to use this premium experience.
How to Access Twitch?
Twitch is accessible on a variety of devices. To watch streams, visit the official Twitch website or use the app for iOS, Apple TV, Android, Windows, Mac, Chromecast, PS4, Xbox One, and countless others.
It’s worth noting that, while you can use watch Twitch freely on pretty much any device, you have to create an account to leave comments and subscribe to different channels.
Why is Twitch so Popular?
Twitch has quickly become one of the most popular sites on the internet, and there are many reasons why. First and foremost, Twitch is a haven for gamers. Whether you’re into first-person shooters, role-playing games, or anything in between, you’re sure to find someone streaming your favorite game on Twitch.
In addition to offering a wide variety of content, Twitch also provides an interactive experience that is unrivaled by other streaming platforms. Chat rooms allow viewers to engage with streamers and other viewers in real-time, making the experience much more personal.
Finally, Twitch’s use of emotes and other graphics helps to create a unique and immersive experience that keeps people coming back for more.
What Content Can You Find on Twitch?
Twitch was initially created for gamers, so, naturally, the main type of content you’ll find here is about video games. The most popular games on Twitch include Fortnite, Grand Theft Auto V, Minecraft, and Call of Duty: Warzone.
In addition to gaming content, you can also find a variety of other content on Twitch, including cooking shows, music performances, and art tutorials. Whether you’re looking for entertainment or educational content, Twitch has something for everyone, which is precisely why it has become one of the most famous online platforms.
And with new content being added all the time, there’s always something new to discover.
How Does it Work?
Using Twitch is pretty straightforward, and you’ll become an expert very quickly. As highlighted above, you can watch Twitch on various devices, such as the official website, mobile apps, and gaming consoles.
You can start by creating an account and finding some games or content that appeal to you. On the Twitch homepage, you will find several games, categories, and channels currently streaming so that you feel familiar with the platform right off the bat.
How Does the Live Stream Work on Twitch?
Live streams are undeniably the most popular content type on Twitch, and it’s easy to see why – you can interact with thousands of users from all around the globe in one chatroom.
In a Twitch live stream, the creator plays video games while telling jokes, entertaining watchers, or making challenges to make the room more engaging. The chatroom is arguably the most powerful tool and allows viewers to comment in real-time.
If you’re new to Twitch, you should know that comments are, for the most part, not censored, and it’s not uncommon to find offensive language and discussions. Of course, there often are human moderators behind the screen to keep it as friendly and safe as possible, but you’ll soon discover that it’s sometimes not enough.
With that in mind, it doesn’t stop the broadcasts from being entertaining, funny, and engaging for users.
Direct Messages on Twitch
On top of the chatroom, users on Twitch can interact with each other using direct messages, known as the ‘Whisper’ feature. If that’s something you’re not into, there are privacy settings that permit you to block direct messages from strangers, which is definitely a good element.
Pros and Cons of Using Twitch
When it comes to live streaming, Twitch has become one of the best platforms, and it offers a number of benefits for both viewers and streamers, but it also has some drawbacks.
For viewers, Twitch provides a convenient way to pass the time and watch their favorite gamers in action. Streamers can interact with their audience and build a following of dedicated fans.
However, Twitch also has a number of frustrating features. The chat function is often overrun by spam messages, and the quality of streams can be inconsistent. In addition, viewer numbers can fluctuate drastically, making it difficult for streamers to build a stable audience.
Also, as we already discussed, live streaming sometimes leads to unwanted conversations such as bullying, racism, and more, despite the community standards in place.
Finally, there are a variety of games to choose from on the platform, but many of them have an 18+ rating. They may contain violent or explicit material, which can be an inconvenience for parents.
Originally, Twitch was focused on video gaming content, but it has since expanded to include streams of other activities such as music, cooking, and talk shows.
Now that you know what is Twitch and everything it offers, you can go ahead and create an account to start watching new, unique content never seen before. Did you get started on the platform already? Let us know what you think and your personal recommendations to enjoy it as much as possible!