Microsoft Acquires Interactive Livestreaming Platform Beam

Microsoft Xbox team today announced that they are acquiring Beam, an interactive livestreaming service that gives viewers the ability to watch and play along with their favorite game streamers in real-time. Beam has evolved game streaming from a passive, watch-and-chat experience into one with real-time participation by the viewer; directly into a streamer’s game play and live broadcast.

How Beam works,

Using “Minecraft” as one example, with Beam you don’t just watch your favorite streamer play, you play along with them. You can give them new challenges and make real-time choices that affect their gameplay, from tool selection to quests to movement; all through simple visual controls. In the highly anticipated “Sea of Thieves,” which is all about emergent adventures in a shared world, you can watch the drama play out between different crews from multiple player perspectives.

Chad Gibson, Partner Group Program Manager, Xbox Live said the following regarding the acquisition,

One of the best parts about Beam is that interactivity is easy for streamers to enable and customize, and is designed to work with any game. We at Xbox are excited about this convergence between playing and watching, and want to provide gamers with the freedom and choice to have great multiplayer experiences across all of Beam’s platforms. This acquisition will help gamers enjoy the games they want, with the people they want, and on the devices they want.

Matt Salsamendi, Co-Founder & CEO of Beam today blogged about this acquisition,

So what changes for you? Nothing right now; we’re continuing our focus on providing streamers with the tools they need to create the most interactive broadcasts around. Beam is designed to work with any game, and we’ll continue to offer broadcasts across all gaming platforms, just as we do today. As Beam becomes part of Team Xbox, you’ll see awesome new features, epic new interactive game integrations, and a huge influx of new community members!

I’ll continue to lead the Beam team in Redmond, now as part of Team Xbox within the Engineering group. You’ll be seeing lots of new faces in the community as we bring on new team members to help grow the platform and I can’t wait for you to meet them.

Read more about it here.

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