Google has announcing that it is launching YouTube Gaming, a new platform designed to help keep gamers connected to games and players around the world.
The new app and website is an attempt by Google to retain gamers' attention as platforms like Twitch, owned by Amazon, becoming increasingly popular.
"On YouTube, gaming has spawned entirely new genres of videos, from let's plays, walkthroughs, and speedruns to cooking and music videos. Now, it's our turn to return the favor with something built just for gamers," said YouTube Gaming Product Manager Alan Joyce. "This summer, we'll launch YouTube Gaming, a brand new app and website to keep you connected to the games, players, and culture that matter to you, with videos, live streams, and the biggest community of gamers on the web-all in one place.
YouTube itself is somewhat of a double-edged sword for Google. While it is a one-stop shop for video content, it often has the same content as other websites, meaning that Google has to find a way to provide the right video at the right time. YouTube Gaming being launched as a standalone platform is a way for the company to offer this for gamers.
The website will include pages for over 25,000 video games with a heavy emphasis on video game streaming, something that is expected from a service such as YouTube. Around these streams, however, gamers will be able to discuss their favorite games and engage in conversation with other gamers. Of course, users will also be able to start live streams of their own. The company has removed the need for users to schedule live streams, enabling a user to start one whenever they want.
Of course, the search engine for the platform has also been tweaked to be specific to video games. For example, if a user were to search the term "Star Wars," the site would find results related to the Star Wars video games, like the upcoming Battlefront game, rather than clips and trailers from Star Wars movies, as would happen on the main YouTube website.
Google isn't the only company creating streaming platforms for gamers. Amazon has spent a lot of money on the concept, buying Twitch for a massive $970 million. Even Facebook is making waves in gaming, buying Oculus VR for $2 billion last year, and finally announcing a consumer version of the headset on June 11 this year.
Even though YouTube is a highly successful platform, Google may have trouble marketing it as the one-stop website and app for the gaming community, especially with the success of platforms like Twitch.