Twitch expanding its livestream dominance with on-demand videos

Twitch has long been the go-to site for video game livestreams, but some technical and user interface hurdles have been holding it back, while competitors like YouTube Gaming have sprung up to take advantage. Now Twitch is firing back, with a host of improvements announced at TwitchCon 2015.

The biggest change is one you won't even see: HTML5 support. While Flash players were once high-tech stuff, they've become slow and buggy compared to more recent code. Twitch will be rolling out HTML5 across the board in early 2016. At the same time, Twitch will also make their back-end a little more like their newest competitor in that broadcasters will be able to upload videos (with customizable thumbnails no less) without needing to stream them first.

Twitch users will also be able to create playlists that will run on their channel while the stream is offline, so that - ideally - browsers searching for content will never bump into a blank screen again. This feature is also slated for early 2016.

In the short-term, Twitch will be rolling out a dedicated app on all PlayStation platforms and separating whispers from the main chat channel, making private conversations a little easier to follow. Both of these updates go live next month.

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