What associations do you have in your mind when you hear the word combination “live streaming app”? Let us guess. It’s highly likely that you will recollect Instagram Live stories, TikTok, Facebook Live, or Twitch TV. Or maybe you think about on-demand services like Netflix or Hulu. However, today video streaming app development has gone significantly further and this functionality boasts popularity not only in the entertainment segment. It has become a comprehensive part of numerous systems used by companies from different industries.
In this blog post, we offer you to have a look at the benefits that businesses can leverage thanks to a live streaming app development company which will help you understand the feasibility of such solutions. We will consider the most popular and highly-demanded features of these apps, and analyze the key points that you need to bear in mind if you are planning to launch an application of this kind.
Live streaming app development in figures
According to the results of the study conducted by Market Research Future (MRFR), the volume of the world’s live streaming market is expected to reach an impressive $534.37 billion by 2030. The projected CAGR for the period between 2020-2030 is to be over 29%.
Though at the moment the market growth is boosted primarily by such giants as Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Vimeo, and IBM, there is still a lot of space for newcomers. And there are weighty reasons to believe that the entrance of new strong players will take place in the nearest future given the increase in demand for steaming app development.
One of the factors that greatly influenced the global live streaming app development segment was the COVID-19 pandemic and all the related lockdown measures and restrictions. While many huge events were just canceled, some others still took place but without visitors. However, thanks to video streaming, people had a chance to “visit” the long-awaited matches or concerts at least virtually. Moreover, live streaming can become a good solution for those who do not have the possibility to travel.
But does all this mean that an idea to build a live streaming app will make sense only if you organize events and do not want to miss your audience? Definitely not. And we’d like to prove it further.
Types of live streaming apps
Before turning to a company for ordering video streaming app development services, it is necessary to decide what app you want to launch. There are several types of live streaming applications.
Live broadcasting apps.
These solutions let users broadcast live video and audio content to other users who have received access to their streams. Twitch, Periscope, and Youtube Live are the brightest examples of such apps.
Audio streaming apps.
These applications allow users to stream only sound without a picture. It means that other users can only listen to what you are transmitting. Examples of apps of this type are Apple Music and Spotify.
Video on-demand (VoD) apps.
With these applications, users can watch their favorite shows not only online but also when they have time for it. Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, YouTube TV belong to this group.
What industries can benefit from streaming app development?
If you are wondering whether video streaming application development can bring any fruits to your business, we offer you to have a look at the following use cases of this functionality within different niches.
The entertainment industry and social media
This industry has greatly changed after streaming technologies were introduced. Today influencers on such applications as TikTok and Instagram regularly organize live streaming events that attract millions of users. Moreover, as we’ve already mentioned above live concerts, games and matches have become a part of our new reality after 2020.
Telemedicine and telehealth apps are aimed at providing patients and doctors with the possibility to organize their interactions in a remote format. As a result, users can save the time and money that traditionally were spent to get to a hospital and can receive medical recommendations significantly faster even without a necessity to leave home. Thanks to streaming features, doctors can see their patients in real-time, talk to them, and analyze their reactions and visual look. All this helps to ensure the efficiency of treatment and accuracy of diagnosis.
Live video streaming app development has also changed the way we imagine education today. If earlier education was associated with classes, desks, blackboards, and books, today many students all over the world enjoy the benefits of online education with online lessons. Some educational institutions use already existing platforms, while others prefer to create their own live streaming apps with functionality that is fully tailored to the needs of their students.
eCommerce use live streaming for letting potential buyers see what their goods look like without any illusions that can be caused by getting references from photos. At the moment, the tendency to use streaming features is rather popular among Chinese sellers. However, it is sensible to predict that businesses all over the world will also adopt this trend.
4 Steps to build a live streaming app
Though the development process of software products of any type looks practically the same, there are some points that are specific to live streaming app development. Let’s have a look at them.
Step 1. Define the needs of your audience and choose a monetization strategy.
First of all, you should analyze, what your potential users expect from our future product, and identify the most important features. Secondly, do not forget to decide on the ways that your app will bring you money. It can be a paid app, or you can offer some premium paid features, or maybe you can earn money on ads.
Step 2. Choose a reliable tech stack and a hosting platform.
While some companies prefer to use the cheapest options, quite often it turns out to be not the best choice. Your audience deserves to have content of the best quality and you are definitely interested in providing users with the best watching experience ever. That’s why reliability (not the lowest price) should be your priority.
Step 3. Build and test your MVP.
When you are going to create a live streaming app, it is recommended to start with a minimum viable product (MVP). It will help you to test your idea without investing (and losing)huge amounts of money. If you are fully satisfied with your app, you can proceed to the development of a full-scale product.
Step 4. Release and maintain your app.
When everything is ready, you can release your final product. Please, make sure that it is fully bug-free and that it works fully as it is supposed to. After the app launch, it will be necessary to monitor its performance and introduce updates if it is required.
Live streaming app development features
If you are considering the possibility to develop a live streaming app, it’s worth analyzing the most highly demanded features that are required for this type of solution. Of course, there are some basic features that will surely come to your mind as soon as you start recollecting any modern apps regardless of their type. These basic features are signup options, verification, personal account, etc.
But let’s have a look at the functionality that is specific for streaming apps. It doesn’t mean that all of the features that we will mention below should be built for your app. Maybe, your solution won’t need some of them or, vice versa, the functionality of your custom solution can be significantly richer.
The necessity of this feature depends on the tasks that your app is supposed to deal with. But for the majority of edtech or telehealth solutions with video streaming features, this functionality is a must. If we are talking about traditional streaming solutions (like platforms used by gamers or social media apps), chats are also very useful for establishing communication between streamers and viewers.
This functionality allows users to follow their favorite influencers or channels in order not to miss their streams. In some cases, subscriptions can be paid.
- Donation system
The idea of monetization of streams is based on a potential desire of viewers to financially support streamers. It can be done by donating some amounts on a voluntary basis. That’s why in video streaming development, it is crucial to create a convenient and safe way to make payments.
- Downloading and Offline mode.
It is obvious that users do not always have time to watch streaming sessions in real time. That’s why it will be a good idea to add a feature that allows downloading videos as well as a feature that provides the possibility to watch videos even when users do not have an internet connection. It means that in this case, users do not need to download videos and can watch (and re-watch) them later directly in the app.
- Filter-based search
A clear search system based on different filters lets users quickly find channels or content that can be interesting to them.
You can enrich your app with AI-powered tools that will offer users channels or streams that will be related to their previous choices and preferences.
- Schedule and notifications
You can build a scheduling functionality that is intended for helping users to plan their time and see the exact dates and timeframes of the events that they want to watch. Moreover, push notifications will remind them about upcoming streams.
- Hosting other streamers
This feature was introduced by Twitch and since that time it has become rather popular in video streaming mobile app development. When some streamers are inactive, to support the activity on their channels, they can host online sessions conducted by other streamers.
Our developers have solid expertise in building apps of this type and are always ready to help you with this task!
Tech stack for building live streaming apps
When you are going to launch a video streaming platform, it is important to understand what technologies and tools your developers should know to create a live streaming app. Below you can find a list of the most popular technologies that are widely used for building an application of this type.
- Programming languages: Java, Kotlin, Swift
- Content delivery network: Amazon CloudFront, Cloudfare
- Database: Oracle, MySQL
- API Server: Node.js
- Hosting: Amazon EC2
- Streaming protocols: RTMP, WebRTC
- Media processing platform: Wowza, DaCast
- Push notification: Firebase notifications
- Messaging queues: AWS Simple Queue System
How much does it cost to create a live streaming app
When it comes to the necessity to name the exact amounts that you will have to invest in live streaming app development, it is impossible to precisely calculate the costs without analyzing the project requirements. There are many factors that influence the price, like the desired functionality, the technologies that will be used, and the number of specialists that will be involved.
Another crucial parameter to bear in mind when you want to develop a live streaming app is the project timeframes. They are also usually set by a development team after the analysis of all the requirements and the functionality that should be created. On average, the live streaming platform development process takes from 3-4 months. And the costs usually start at $20,000 but can greatly vary in accordance with the project specificity.
Key challenges of video streaming application development
Before you start building your video streaming platform, we recommend you take into account the major challenges and pitfalls that you can face.
- Security. If your app works on a subscription base, it is very important to protect users' sensitive data. Reliable encryption algorithms will help to minimize the risks of data loss and damage. That's the first issue. The second one is related to copyrights of the streaming content.
- Scalability. The main goal any business that launches a live streaming platform wants to achieve is to increase the number of users. However, the growing user base can bring some issues. Yo ur app should be scalable enough and should be ready to work under high loads.
- Video quality. There is a row of external factors that can negatively influence streaming quality. Though we all understand it, interruptions and poor image quality can lead to serious reputational losses of your business and user dissatisfaction. To avoid any unpleasant consequences, you can add an auto quality adjustment feature that will ensure the appropriate video streaming quality based on the current network state.
Video streaming app development by Cogniteq
Our developers have rich expertise in building solutions that are powered by video streaming features. Thanks to the deep knowledge and excellent skills of our engineers, we can deliver innovative apps that demonstrate excellent performance and solve all the set tasks. Let us mention a couple of successfully launched software products developed by our team.
One of these apps is PRISM Therapy Online. It is a web application built for the healthcare industry. Users visit this platform, fill in a short assessment form, and get access to a list of the recommended therapists that have the best skills to deal with the described issues. After making a choice and booking an appointment, users can make payments. Consultations on the platform can be held in two formats: live text chats or video calls.
The second project that we want to tell you about is an online course platform with video streaming. It is an e-learning platform with a subscription system that can be used for distance school education, staff training, and individual lessons. We also built mobile versions of this solution for Android and iOS users. At the moment of the product launch, it was the only web platform with online courses that also has live streaming functionality. The platform allows users to test the knowledge of their students and carry out certifications.
Instead of a closing word
As you can see live streaming development segment is growing rather fast together with the increasing demand for edtech, telehealth, and entertainment solutions with the relevant functionality. Moreover, there are some industries, like eCommerce, that are now gaining momentum in adopting live streaming as a new standard. That’s why if you have an idea for an app, it can be a very good time to start working on its realization. If you are looking for professional developers who will be able to help you, our team is always at your disposal. Do not hesitate to contact us.
What are the most popular types of live streaming development solutions?
If we are talking about traditional types of these solutions, we can define live video streaming apps (like Twitch), on-demand video streaming platforms (like Netflix), and video streaming applications from TV providers (for example, HBO NOW).
What are the benefits of video streaming app development for businesses?
With live streaming apps, businesses can reach a wide audience simultaneously, attract new users, increase conversion rate, and expand the range of content types that can become available to their clients.