In Q3, Ninja made the bombshell announcement that he will be streaming exclusively to Microsoft’s Mixer. It didn’t take long for others to follow suit. He was joined soon after by Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek. In November, Jack “CouRageJD” Dunlop announced that he would be streaming exclusively on YouTube Gaming Live, and Jeremy “Disguised Toast” Wang announced that he would be leaving Twitch to stream exclusively on Facebook Gaming. As we saw last quarter, Ninja’s move alone appeared to have a small impact on Twitch in Q3. In fact, the hours watched on the platform increased. However, this quarter it seems the culmination of many streamers moving platforms has had an effect on Twitch.

Points to Consider:

  • Twitch is still leading but experienced an overall decline in 2019.
  • The total hours watched on YouTube Gaming Live increased by 46% from Q1 to Q4 in 2019 and accounted for 27.6% market share in terms of hours watched for Q4, up 7% since last quarter.
  • Last quarter, YouTube Gaming Live was the only platform to see an increase in hours watched, streamed, and concurrent viewership.
  • Mixer more than doubled its number of hours watched and streamed when comparing 2019 to 2018.
  • Mixer has nearly the same number of unique channels streaming on the platform as Twitch. Mixer also has more than triple the number of unique channels compared to YouTube Gaming Live.
  • Riot Games was the most-watched publisher of 2019 across all platforms, beating Epic Games by 25.1 million hours
  • 28.5% less Fortnite content was watched in 2019

Thanks to Newzoo for providing the data for Twitch, Mixer, and YouTube Gaming Live.

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Please note: In January 2019, Newzoo implemented a change to its YouTube data collection methodology. They began collecting data from all live channels, instead of the top 100 channels for each game. What does this mean? Essentially, YouTube data from January 2019 onwards cannot be directly compared to viewership figures before January 2019. This change only applies to Newzoo’s YouTube methodology and has no impact on its viewing data for Twitch or Mixer.

Twitch

The streaming wars are heating up. We are starting to see how exclusivity deals from competitors are affecting Twitch, which is by far still the leader in terms of hours watched and streamed. However, Twitch lost some of its momentum in 2019.

Total Hours Watched in Q4

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The number of hours watched on Twitch in Q4 decreased by 9.8% compared to Q3, resulting in the lowest number of hours watched on the platform since Q3 2018. However, there has been a 12% increase in hours watched on the platform in 2019 compared to 2018.

Total Hours Streamed in Q4

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Twitch is also experiencing the lowest number of hours streamed on the platform since Q2 2018. However, there has been a 16.1% increase in hours streamed on the platform in 2019 compared to 2018.

Unique Channels

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After experiencing the highest number of unique channels streaming on the platform in Q1, there has been a 33% decrease since

Average CCV

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The average concurrent viewers on the platform has decreased by 9.4% since the previous quarter. This is the lowest average CCV since Q3 of 2018. There has been a 12.3% increase in average concurrent viewers on the platform in 2019 compared to 2018.

Average Viewers Per Channel

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The average viewer per channel remains stable from previous quarters and has increased by 12.5% since Q1 2018

YouTube Gaming Live

YouTube Gaming Live saw notable growth over the last quarter and this year. While CourageJD’s move has most certainly helped boost the numbers, Ryan Wyatt (YouTube’s Global Head of Gaming) has noted that the majority of the top esports events and influencer moments were broadcast on YouTube Gaming, as well.

*Note*: Data for YouTube Gaming Live in 2018 was limited to the top 100 channels per game at any given time. In 2019, data gathering has been improved and encompasses all live streaming channels. As a result, graphics are not including data from 2018.

Total Hours Watched in Q4

The total hours watched on YouTube Gaming Live increased by 46% in 2019 from Q1 to Q4.

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Total Hours Streamed in Q4

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The number of hours streamed has remained relatively stable throughout the year.

Unique Channels

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The number of unique channels streaming on the platform decreased by 24.6% since Q1; however, the number of channels increased by 4.8% from the previous quarter.

Average CCV

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The average concurrent viewership for YouTube Gaming Live in Q4 increased by a massive 33.8%. YouTube Gaming Live was the only platform to see an increase in average concurrent viewership this quarter.

Average Viewers per Channel

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Typically, as we see more channels streaming on a platform, we expect the average viewer per channel to decrease. This is not the case with YouTube Gaming Live. Average viewers per channel increased 21% since last quarter — even with a 4.8% increase in channels streaming to the platform.

Mixer

As we noted last quarter, based on the jump in hours streamed, Ninja’s move to Mixer seemed to have encouraged many other streamers to start broadcasting on the platform. In Q4, Shroud announced he would also be exclusively streaming to Mixer. At the time, Shroud had over 6.9 million followers on Twitch, making him the third-most-followed channel behind Tfue and Ninja’s now-inactive channel. While year-over-year growth for Mixer is still impressive, despite the recent exclusivity deal with Shroud, the numbers are lower quarter-over-quarter.

Total Hours Watched in Q4

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There was an 8.5% decrease in hours watched on the platform from Q4 to Q3. Despite this decrease, It’s important to note that Mixer still more than doubled the number of hours watched when comparing the totals from 2019 to 2018.

Total Hours Streamed in Q4

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In Q3, the number of hours streamed on the platform more than doubled, thanks in part to Ninja’s move. In Q4, Shroud’s move seemed to help maintain this momentum. Quarter-over-quarter, the number of hours streamed decreased by 12.9%; however, 80.3 million hours of gaming video content were streamed to Mixer in 2019 vs just 35.2 million hours in 2018.

Unique Channels

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Similarly, compared to last quarter, we saw a major increase in the number of unique channels streaming to Mixer. In Q4, there was a 7.5% decrease from last quarter. There was a 78% increase in unique channels streaming to platform in 2019 compared to 2018.

Average CCV

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The average concurrent viewers on the platform decreased by 8% from Q3 to Q4. There was a 55.1% increase in total concurrent viewers for 2019 compared to 2018.

Average Viewers Per Channel

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As the number of streamers on the platform increases, we can expect the average viewers per channel to decrease. Quarter-over-quarter this number remains relatively stable, increasing by just 7.4% from last quarter.

Facebook Gaming

While Facebook Gaming live streaming data was not available based on our report methodology, we are taking a closer look at the trends we are seeing based off of Facebook Gaming streamers using Streamlabs OBS.

According to Streamlabs data, there was a 400% increase in the number of live streams broadcast to Facebook Gaming in 2019, from 504,173 live streams in Q1 to 2,525,863 in Q4. Additionally, the number of total hours streamed increased by 275% from 438,835 in Q1 to 1,648,557 in Q4.

Between late Nov. and December, some large/well-known streamers announced their switch to Facebook Gaming, which certainly added to the growth and momentum over the last quarter. Those included Disguised Toast, Zero and Corinna Kopf. In Nov. Facebook Gaming also launched charity live streaming tools for all partnered and Level Up gaming creators. Internationally, they also launched the standalone Facebook Gaming app in Thailand along with all of Latin America.

Top 10 Publishers Watched in 2019 Across All Platforms

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Riot Games was the most-watched publisher of 2019, thanks to both League of Legends and Teamfight Tactics. Slightly behind was Epic Games, trailing by only 25.1 million hours. Watched content for Riot Games increased by 17.5% in 2019 from Q1 to Q4, while the total hours watched for Epic Games decreased by 28.5% in 2019 from Q1 to Q4.

Fortnite Hours Watched in 2019 Across All Platforms

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It seems the hype surrounding Fortnite is stabilizing. People are watching 29% less Fortnite in Q4 compared to Q1. This is interesting, considering the number of hours watched for League of Legends increased by 3.6% in 2019 (346.4 million hours in Q1 to 359 in Q4). Grand Theft Auto V has also experienced a resurgence last year. There was a 42.3% increase in hours watched in 2019 (98.4 million hours in Q1 to 140 million in Q4), partially driven by the popular modded GTA RP(Role Playing) servers.

Top Games Watched on Twitch in 2019

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Top Games Watched on YouTube Gaming Live in 2019

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Top Games Watched on Mixer in 2019

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YouTube Gaming Live seems to be making major progress this year, boasting the largest percentage increase in hours watched in 2019. With a 46% increase in 2019, YouTube Gaming Live accounted for 22.1% market share for 2019 in terms of hours watched while Twitch market share accounts for 75.1% and Mixer market share accounted for is 2.7%.

On the other hand, Mixer is neck and neck with Twitch in terms of unique channels that streamed on the platform in Q4. Meanwhile, there is more than triple the number of unique channels streaming to Mixer than YouTube Gaming Live.

While it’s been an uphill battle for live-streaming platforms to compete with Twitch so far, it seems like we are beginning to see more healthy competition. Time will tell if YouTube Gaming Live, Mixer, and Facebook Gaming can sustain the momentum they established in 2019.


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