Meerkat, a mobile live video streaming app, was the breakout star at this year's SXSW conference in Austin, Texas, and many believe the rapid rise of the app will usher in live mobile video streaming as the next big social media trend.
Sensing opportunity, Ustream, a mobile streaming platform that provides an end-to-end live streaming solution that is popular with enterprises, decided to launch an API offering that will make it easy for developers to build their own Meerkat-like apps.
In a post on the company's blog, Ustream CEO Brad Hunstable wrote about the developments in the live streaming space. "Recently, a couple startups have generated a lot of attention around the idea that consumers can share live video on Twitter, leading to speculation that this capability might lead to new behaviors in content sharing for both consumers and companies. We wholeheartedly agree."
He went on:
To meet the needs of companies who want to leverage this behavior shift, we built a powerful set of APIs that allow anyone to create applications that stream live video from mobile devices.
Very soon, we’ll be announcing an addition to our APIs that makes it trivially easy for anyone to create countless variations on the Meerkat concept to leverage mobile devices and live video to communicate in new and creative ways, while leveraging social networks, like Twitter and Facebook, to share their messages.
While it preps the launch of those additions, Ustream announced that it has opened its live mobile broadcasting SDK and APIs. Previously, these were accessible only to developers within Ustream and used to build Ustream's own applications.
While the final incarnation of Ustream's developer offering will make it easy for creative developers to create Meerkat-inspired apps, Ustream also believes that it will help brands find new and innovative ways to empower consumers. "By bringing to market the ability to ‘build your own’ mobile streaming app, communications from brands, media companies and consumers can co-mingle for the ultimate streaming content experience. Whether it’s sports fans in the stands at a NASCAR race, participants in a triathlon streaming from a GoPro, or attendees at a major keynote at a trade show, more than ever brands and media companies will be able to share live experiences from the viewpoint of the consumer," Hunstable stated.