YouTube is about to acquire video-game streaming vendor Twitch, which was formerly known as Justin.tv, for more than $1 billion, according to a report by Variety.
The pending acquisition is based on anonymous sources, according to the report. The Twitch gaming community serves more than 45 million visitors per month who broadcast, watch and chat with each other about gaming around the world, according to Twitch. Twitch works with Sony PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Xbox game consoles.
The purported merger, however, may not be simple. "YouTube is preparing for U.S. regulators to challenge the Twitch deal, according to sources," reported Variety. "YouTube is far and away the No. 1 platform for Internet video, serving more than 6 billion hours of video per month to 1 billion users worldwide, and the company expects the Justice Department to take a hard look at whether buying Twitch raises anticompetitive issues in the online-video market."
Google declined an eWEEK request for reaction to the report. "We don't comment on rumors or speculation," a spokesman replied in an email.
Google bought YouTube in October 2006 for $1.65 billion, according to an earlier eWEEK report. In March 2013, YouTube announced that it has grown to providing video content for more than 1 billion viewers per month. The popular video-sharing site has helped launch the careers of a slew of entertainers and made celebrities out of ordinary citizens, thanks to viral videos. The potential acquisition of Twitch would increase YouTube's reach even further in the online video marketplace.
Twitch originally launched as Justin.tv in June 2011, according to the company.
YouTube is often making changes and additions for its online video fans.
In January 2014, YouTube launched a first-time-ever online gallery where viewers could begin to see previews of the ads that would later run on television during the Super Bowl XLVIII broadcast on Feb. 2. The gallery provided viewers with sneak peeks of some of the ads that were shown during the broadcast through a YouTube Ad Blitz pregame gallery that was created. In the gallery, users were able to watch and vote for their favorite ads, and then share them with friends through social media networks.
In November 2013, YouTube hosted its first-ever YouTube Music Awards, with fans voting for their favorite performers. The awards presentation, which was streamed live Nov. 3, presented music fans with a wide assortment of live performances from some of the biggest music stars who became global hits on YouTube in 2013, including Arcade Fire, Avicii, CDZA, Earl Sweatshirt, Eminem, Lady Gaga, Lindsey Stirling, M.I.A., Tyler, The Creator and Walk off the Earth.
In September 2013, YouTube streamed live online coverage of the 2013 Mercedes Benz Fashion Week events in New York City, bringing the latest fashions and trends to the world. Included in the YouTube coverage were more than 60 live shows from BCBG, Rachel Zoe, Betsey Johnson, Jenny Packham and more on the IMG Fashion YouTube channel, as well as stylish channel live stream shows on getting made up to the hilt with expert help from fashion and makeup experts such as Louise Goldin and Jeremy Scott.
YouTube launched in May 2005 as a video-sharing Website where people could post their creative works and watch to see if they gained any footholds. YouTube's popularity has been huge, with the site receiving more than 100 hours of uploaded video from creators each minute. All of that video content is being created by millions of partners and contributors, some of whom have become very popular through the growing site.