Live-streaming app Meerkat was the next big thing at South by Southwest Interactive, but a week later fickle fans turned their love to Periscope, Twitter's just-released app for feeding live video to followers. Buzz is no predictor of ultimate success and ubiquity -- remember Secret? Ello? But it makes sense that live video is having a moment: smartphones have made photographers, videographers, and media consumers of us all, not to mention social sharers (and oversharers). To start broadcasting yourself, here are our favorite seven live-video apps.
Meerkat enables you to stream live video to your Twitter followers: just press Stream. Other Meerkat users can get notifications, watch on Twitter or the Web, and comment in real time. Live video is your only option: if you want to rerun your video, you'll have to save it on your phone and rebroadcast on another app. Unfortunately it'll take some work to find your fellow users, because Twitter doesn't make it easy.
Meerkat is available only on iOS, but Android users can try Tarsii. Like Meerkat, this Google Play-only app enables you to stream live video to all your Twitter followers with the touch of a button.
As you would expect, Twitter's live-streaming video app, Periscope, is much more integrated into the social media giant's API than Meerkat, starting with suggestions for which Twitter users to follow. While Meerkat is live only, Periscope lets you stream videos you may have missed up to 24 hours later. Periscope also lets you geotag your location, limit your audience, and -- if viewers give you lots of hearts -- make the coveted Most Loved list.
With Livestream you can broadcast and watch live geotagged video, directly from your device. You can also filter video in Black & White, Antique, Night-Shot, and Super 8. If you are a GoPro Hero user, connect the device to the app, put your phone in your pocket, and broadcast your next mountain-biking or skydiving adventure over the Livestream app or Livestream.com.
Bambuser exploded in popularity during the Arab Spring, enabling people on the street to cover protests in a way that mainstream media couldn't or wouldn't. You can broadcast any event over social networks, geotag videos, and connect with viewers via incoming chat messages.
With Ustream, you can be the star of your own channel or follow someone else's. Stream live and prerecorded videos or, if you're more of a voyeur, search for fellow users with matching interests and follow them to get alerts about new offerings. You can also live-chat with users during their live-streaming events.
Stream also lets you tbroadcast and watch live video, find and interact with friends and people with mutual interests, and share videos over social media. What sets Stream apart is its Reel feature, which lets you share your top daily moments in one riveting clip.