Thursday, February 7, 2008

Yahoo Launches Live! A New Live Streaming Service... Well, Sort of

In the midst of an impending takeover by Microsoft, Yahoo launched a new "experimental" live streaming service, called Yahoo! Live, which has already seems to have reached capacity on its first outing.

Both ReadWriteweb and TechCrunch reviewed the new site describing its functionality and Michael Kirkpatrick of ReadWriteweb, who tried to cover the launch live wrote, "It looks pretty good though early tests are experiencing scaling issues already. Apparently, the company that gets more web traffic than anyone on earth is incapable so far of handling 400 people watching 30 live video streams. Actually, a flood of early adopters just came in via Twitter and the thing promptly broke - completely as far as I can tell. The service combines many of the best practices developed by early explorers of the medium, tiny startups that must be very worried tonight. Part BlogTV, part Mogulus and just plain better than UStream"

On the Yahoo! Live blog, Michael Quoc, Director of Advanced Products, describes the service as, "a new experiment in live video from the Advanced Products team at Yahoo!. Y! Live was dreamed up as a way to make it possible for anyone to create their own live video experience. Broadcast the concert you’re at. Webcast your own live DJ set. Lifecast. Build your own live video speed dating application. We’ve created a website and an API that lets you do all these things and many more."

Quoc continued that, "Keep in mind that Y! Live is an experimental release.... Y! Live is a limited capacity release, so bear with us as and we may reach our limits in periods of high traffic. Our top priority now is to hear your feedback – send your comments to, and follow our twitter feed to hear about headline broadcasts and notable things happening live."

Regarding it's experimental state, Chad Dickerson, Sr. Director of Yahoo's Advanced Product Team, commented on TechCrunch that, "Needless to say, we’re aware of and not surprised by the stability issues (ironically, someone sent me a message via Twitter about the servers getting pounded and Twitter timed out just before it delivered the message! C’est la vie.) This is an experiment (see our post on Yahoo! Next for more about the product and API — ).

As it joins the ranks of it's live streaming competitors (Stickam,, Ustream, Mogulus and Blogtv) it will be interesting to see how Y! Live evolves and becomes more stable over time. Given that you gotta wonder what Google may have up it's sleeve.

Sorry Y! Live but here's another TechCrunch review on the the launch, Yahoo Live Fails to Scale