Twitch.tv releases an Xbox 360 app: It’s convenient, but the lack of a search tool is puzzling
Video game streaming service, Twitch.tv announced yesterday that it has launched an Xbox 360 app that will allow users to watch streamed video from their console. This app will finally allow hundreds of thousands of spectators to view competitions and other events from the comfort of their living room. Of course, this always a requires an Xbox Live subscription.
If you've ever wanted to relax and watch some League of Legends on the television without having to connect your PC or laptop, suddenly you have a viable option in hardware you likely already have connected. I was just a touch giddy about getting to sit down with my dinner and relax on the couch while watching Maker vs DeMuslim in the StarCraft 2 Blizzard World Championship series without the need for an elaborate set up.
We tested out the app quite a bit over the last 24 hours, and it works well. Tournament streams came through looking crisp on my HDTV, and there were no major hiccups or service interruptions. This is still the same outstanding Twitch.tv service we've been enjoying for years, although as always performance will be dependent on your connection speed.
Navigating to major games, tournaments etc is a breeze and can be done in a few quick movemements, and load times are minimal.
The only oversight, and it's bizarre, is the complete lack of a search tool. Luckily the streams are organized the same way they are on Twitch.tv, with the most popular listed first. Twitch streams tend to be very top-heavy with tens of thousands of viewers in the most popular streams, but only dozens after you leave the top 10. If you're searching for a friend's small stream then you could run into problems, but for the majority of people who just want to watch MLG/LCS in comfort, or relax with Ocelote's stream, then you'll have no problems
I'll be very interested to see how this impacts the audience for streaming in the future. WIll stream counts go up once viewers no longer need to be glued to their PC? Will the audience grow older once parents can watch games in the living room with the whole family?
This move would also positively impact the viewerbase for Call of Duty. Console-based eSports have not been particularly popular historically, but part of that could be the difficulty in transporting a console-based group of players onto a PC stream. That separation is now gone, and console gaming can now be viewed via the same console on which it's played.
If you're looking for a big event to break in the new app or if you're looking to be introduced to competitive gaming, the League of Legends All-Star series will be starting two weekends from now from the 24th to the 26th. Alternatively, the StarCraft 2 Blizzard World Championship Series is ongoing as well, and has been quite entertaining so far.