In a somewhat interesting move, LinkedIn is debuting video streaming on its platform. Dubbed LinkedIn Live, the feature will launch in the U.S. in the coming weeks, but will begin invite-only.
According to TechCrunch, organizations will be able to host Q&As, conferences, and product announcements directly in a user's feed. The company will be working with third-party developers like Wirecast, Sociallive, and Brandlive to produced high-quality content.
Naturally, the feature also pulls somewhat from Microsoft, which has ample experience in live streaming and owns Linkedin. The parent company has seen some success with its Twitch competitor, Mixer, and has a strong Azure backbone.
As a result, LinkedIn has listed Microsoft as a technical partner on this project, utilizing Azure Media Services and encoding to ensure a stable, low latency experience.
“Live has been the most requested feature,” said Pete Davis, director of product management, LinkedIn, to TechCrunch. “Video is the fastest growing format on our platform right now, and the one most likely to get people talking.”
Opening the Door to Monetization
Major social media organizations Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram all support live video, so the move makes sense. There's nothing about live streaming that's inherently unprofessional, and the company doesn't want users going outside its platform for those services.
However, this is also an opportunity for the company to introduce further monetization. In addition to its video advertising, the company could charge for certain premium live streaming experience, or take a cut on paid conference live streams.
It's not yet clear when LinkedIn Live will see a full release, but it'll be interesting to see how many utilize it, given the demand.