Microsoft has acquired Beam, a service that makes live game streaming interactive.
(CCM) — Microsoft is upping the ante in its battle for game console supremacy by purchasing Seattle-based Beam, an interactive game streaming service. Beam allows people to join in a game and play along with internet game streamers in real time. For example, while watching a Minecraft game, stream users can give the streamer new challenges and make real time choices that affect their gameplay, from tool selection to quests to movement, explained Chad Gibson, Microsoft's Xbox Live Program Manager, in a blog post. Beam has been designed to make it easy for streamers to enable and customize, and it should work with any game, he added.
Beam was launched in January of this year and has grown rapidly to about 100,000 users. Its key technology is its "sub-second delay streaming stack" which reduces latency — the delay between a user's action and that action being reflected on the stream — to less than a second. "As part of Xbox, we'll be able to scale faster than we've ever been able to before. We're expanding the team, bolstering our infrastructure, and, most importantly, continuing to grow and support the amazing community at Beam," said Matt Salsamendi, Beam's CEO.
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