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Video Gaming Streaming During the Pandemic: Twitch

In one of our previous posts, about the video gaming industry, we talked about how the pandemic had a positive impact on the industry. We will be continuing that topic on this post! It is not just the games themselves but gaming-related apps and platforms have increased growth as well. Amazon-owned game streaming platform Twitch has a 24% increase in their viewership (Upfluence). Based on the data collected, a 30-50% increase in the viewership for Western countries approximately around the same time as the lockdown. Although Twitch's base is gaming streaming, audiences were seeking musical content on the platform as well. Musicians in Western countries started announcing online shows since their tours were canceled (talkinginfluence). As it can be seen from the bar graph below, there is a significant spike in music streams as well as gaming and just chatting streams in March 2020. Furthermore, there was a 3.3% increase in the number of channels on Twitch as well in March 2020.  

In February 2020 Twitch had 1,410,516 average viewers for the month and 2,660,358 maximum viewers. There was an increase in the next month.  In March 2020, Twitch had 1,638,049 average viewers and its maximum viewers were 3,390,275. The numbers for March 2021 are much higher. Average viewers is 2,931,862 and maximum viewers is 5,247,614. The numbers kept increasing during the pandemic. Now the question remains as to if this increase will keep happening as time goes on. Since the number of people getting vaccinated keeps increasing day by day, one wonders if the popularity of streaming will remain. When you dive deeper into the viewership by country, as can be seen in the graph below, the US has the higher percentage and it is followed by Germany, Russia, Canada, and Brazil. In our first gaming industry blog post, it was mentioned that the gaming industry is quite big in the Asia-Pacific region. Looking at the top 5 streaming countries, it is surprising to see that the countries in that region do not appear in the top 5 list. Gaming companies should consider this in their streaming marketing efforts. Although video gaming is quite big in the Asia-Pacific region, there does not seem to be a lot of interest in streaming the games. 

When you look at the languages that the streams and the viewers are in, in the image below, it can be seen that the top language is English for both. Almost 50 % of streamers are streaming in English and the viewers are consuming content that is in English. The top 10 languages that are shown in this graphic indicate that the Asia-Pacific does not make a strong appearance.

It will be interesting to see in the remainder of 2021 if the trend for streaming on Twitch will continue. With the pandemic, there is no denying that people have turned to game and gaming-related content. We will all see if these people have found a hobby that they will enjoy from now on or if they are going to go back to how things were for them before the pandemic. 

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