X Introduces Premium-Only Live Streaming Feature

Updated July 02, 2024 Dan Tech

X Live Streaming

In a surprising move, X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, has announced that access to live streaming will be restricted to its premium users only. This decision sets X apart as the first major social media platform to charge for this feature, which was previously free on other platforms like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitch, and TikTok.

According to a report by PhoneArena, X stated, "Soon, in the near future, only Premium subscribers will be able to go live (broadcast video streams) on X. This includes live broadcasts from encoders with X integration which will also affect the ability to stream games on X."

Shift to a Premium Model

X has not provided a specific explanation for this change. Previously, X incentivized users to subscribe to premium packages by offering additional features such as post editing, long-form writing, and an ad-free experience.

This marks a departure from their usual practice of not restricting existing features widely available to paying users. The current subscriptions for X Premium start at USD 3 per month for the basic tier, going up to USD 8 per month for Premium, and USD 16 per month for Premium+.

Potential Expansion of Paid Features

This shift indicates a potential change in X's strategy, moving from an ad-based model to one that combines a mix of advertising and paid subscriptions. The recent introduction of a USD 1 annual fee for new accounts in New Zealand and the Philippines to gain posting rights further supports this notion.

Elon Musk, the owner of X, has hinted at the possibility of extending these fees to all new users globally. While still in testing phases, this move has received criticism from X users, with concerns raised about the platform being one of the few to charge for live streaming.

User Reactions and Industry Implications

The reactions to this announcement have been mixed, with some users expressing discontent. One user highlighted, "the fact that no other platform, even those with superior UI and video player, charges its users for streaming."

It remains to be seen how users will react to these changes once implemented and whether other platforms will follow suit. The industry will be watching closely to see the impact of X's decision on the social media landscape.

X's decision to make live streaming a premium-only feature marks a significant shift in its approach to monetization. As the platform explores a new revenue model, it will be interesting to observe how users adapt to these changes and whether this move sets a new trend in the social media industry.

Published: June 26, 2024

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