Twitch today launched its new IRL streaming category, a section designed to allow streamers to release non-gameplay content and talk about their everyday lives. Basically, Twitch has a whole new category for streamers who just want to vlog in real-time. Twitch has launched new community guidelines to deal with the IRL category.Watch live video from on www.twitch.tv
In addition, Twitch will be updating the mobile app in 2017 to allow for mobile broadcasting, allowing users to stream from their smartphone's camera.
"We're amazed by our creators who build thriving communities and create compelling content for millions of viewers," said Emmett Shear, CEO of Twitch. "While gaming is their core identity, what we've heard repeatedly from them is that they are interested in sharing their everyday lives, thoughts, and opinions with their communities. IRL is designed to help our creators foster that kind of community interaction."
This isn't the first alternate category that Twitch has launched. Twitch Creative allows artists to stream their work and Social Eating was all about streaming cooking and food channels. Together with IRL, these new categories represent Twitch's expansion back into territory formerly occupied by Twitch's predecessor Justin.tv.
Twitch won't be preventing streamers from focusing purely on the IRL category and leaving game streaming behind.
"Since vlogging is a very popular format that will benefit from our unique chat, community and moderation tools, there are bound to be creators who focus on it full time," a Twitch spokesperson told USgamer. "We would never discourage our users from focusing on one content category over another. We are always excited about new users discovering our platform which is why we are big proponents of inclusiveness. Our recent AutoMod announcement that helps mitigate inappropriate behavior is an example of that."
As to future expansions of Twitch's platform, the company isn't ruling anything out, but says it's all based on community feedback.
"As with all categories we've introduced, from Creative to Social Eating and now IRL, we look to the community to guide us toward what they want to see on the platform," the Twitch spokesperson explained.