The immediacy of live-streaming is fantastic, and in some ways having the footage disappear after you’ve ended your broadcast (as is the case in Meerkat) just adds to the intrigue – be there or miss out. The thing is, we can’t all be there all the time. Enter Periscope, a new app created by a company acquired by Twitter. Periscope has all the live-streaming skills of Meerkat, but also allows you to save your video so users can browse the app and find not-so-live content that they otherwise would have missed out on. Of course, sometimes it’s fun to create or view truly live content which isn’t accessible after the fact and you can still optionally do that with Periscope as well.
But Periscope is more than just Meerkat with a save button; you can also send hearts to streamers in real time and when you do those hearts will flutter up the screen, visible to both the person recording the video and those watching it, as a visual indicator that people like what they’re seeing. It all makes the barebones approach of Meerkat seem almost…quaint. It’s not yet get the following Meerkat does of course. In fact it’s only just launched on iOS and the Android app isn’t yet available, plus presumably Meerkat could easily nab some of its features if it felt the need. But with the might of Twitter behind Periscope, Meerkat should watch its back. Periscope is here and it’s attached to a 50,000 tonne tech submarine.