The popularity of streaming services for video games, such as Twitch, YouTube Gaming or Facebook Gaming, seems to be declining. According to the latest report from Streamlabs, streamers on these three platforms streamed only 273 hours of live footage in the second quarter of this year (April – June 2022), which is almost 20% (19.4%, to be exact) less than the same period in 2021 and 12% less than the previous quarter.
Viewership numbers do not look any better either: Users of the three services watched 7.36 billion hours of streaming in Q2 2022. That’s 18.1% less than last year (when 8.99 billion hours were viewed) and 8.4% less than the previous three months. These declines are, of course, due in part to the fact that people in most regions of the world have escaped anti-covid restrictions and are spending more time outside their homes.
Twitch remains the market leader in this segment
Twitch remains the most popular platform for streaming video games, with a 76.7% market share in hours viewed (5.64 billion) and 92.7% in hours streamed by content creators (204.2 million). However, these figures are also 13.4% and 16% lower than those of Q2 2021, respectively. Last but not least, the number of unique streaming channels on Twitch decreased by almost 2 million, reaching 9.6 million.
In contrast, the “chat only” category on Twitch continues to grow. The number of hours viewed for such content increased by 2.2% compared to the previous quarter, bringing the category to its highest viewership numbers ever. The next most popular categories on Twitch are Grand Theft Auto V (with 465 million hours of content viewed) and League of Legends (464 million hours).
YouTube holds up well, Facebook is going down
In contrast, YouTube Gaming’s recorded viewership remained stable compared to the previous quarter (1.13 billion hours of viewing), although it dropped 13.1% compared to the same period in 2021. YouTube Gaming creator streamed hours (8.05 million) are down 9.6% year-over-year.
In freefall is Facebook Gaming, Meta’s video game streaming service. Thus, the number of hours watched decreased by more than 50%, reaching a total of only 580 million. Streamers are also no longer flocking to the platform: the number of hours streamed by content creators fell by no less than 62%, from 20.8 million in the second quarter of 2021 to just 7.9 million in the same period this year.