Amazon adds iOS-based live streaming to boost retailers – and take on Facebook Live

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Amazon is allowing brands and retailers on its site to live stream product demos and sales pitches in a new service using nothing more than a smartphone.

Reminiscent of TV shopping channels, Amazon Live sits on the retailer or brand’s product details page and on the Amazon Live home page and allows live interaction between viewers and the retailer while the ‘broadcast’ is in progress.

Each broadcast is then also archived for future use by shoppers. 

While the Live Stream is in progress, shoppers can talk to the retailer or brand – and indeed with other shoppers – using live chat and the products being featured in the Live Stream are available to buy along the side of the video player.

Live Steam isn’t available to all, however, being only available to Professional Sellers on Amazon’s Brand Registry and isn’t currently open to retailers in China and Hong Kong.

If you qualify, then it relatively is easy to set up, working off a simple iOS app. The brand or retailer downloads the Creator Apple app, which then allows the stream to filmed and streamed from an iPhone or, using a live stream encoder, a professional camera can be used.

The services is the first fruits of Amazon’s acquisition of live streaming gaming platform Twitch back in 2014. The move comes the same week as LinkedIn also launches a Live video streaming service – called, of course, LinkedIn Live – to allow businesses to share thought-leadership and promotional videos.

While Amazon’s efforts mirror more TV shopping channels, both it and LinkedIn’s Live streaming services are both a response to Facebook Live, which until now was the only platform offering such widespread video streaming to retailers on a marketplace-like platform.

Image: Amazon

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