While livestreaming gameplay on Twitch has become an increasingly important part of gaming culture, the service has always had shortcomings. Most notably, Twitch works great for viewing live shows but has very limited video-on-demand capabilities. Today, the company announced plans to turn that around.
In a post on Twitch's official blog, the company revealed that they will begin implementing a new video-on-demand system that allows for higher quality VODs, the ability to view archived content on mobile and other platforms, easier YouTube exporting and more. The new system does come with some drawbacks.
In its current form, Twitch only saves past broadcasts for around a week unless the owner of the channel manually sets a broadcast to "save forever." Under the new system, Twitch will save past broadcasts for a longer time — up to 60 days for Twitch Turbo subscribers or members of its partner system — but there will no longer be a "save forever" option.
While this might sound bad initially, Twitch promises that you can keep your content around indefinitely if you split it into "highlights." By cutting broadcast videos into chunks of up to two hours, you can ensure that it will be available for good. Twitch provided this image to highlight the change:
Twitch also posted the video above showing off the new video-on-demand content management system that broadcasters will be using.
Of most immediate concern to broadcasters, the blog post notes that current past broadcasts, even those you chose to "save forever," will be removed from Twitch's servers beginning three weeks from today. You'll need to start chopping them into highlights now if you want any of that content to stick around.
Twitch says questions about the new system can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. It will also be participating in a Reddit "ask me anything" on Thursday and a Q&A livestream on Friday to take questions.