Amazon acquire Twitch video gaming site

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TwitchI’m not a gamer so I’m a bit bemused by Amazon’s purchase of Twitch, (and indeed the site itself).

Twitch is a video upload venue where gamers can upload live streaming video of themselves playing video games. Amazon just paid a touch under a billion dollars ($970 million) for a site where you basically don’t even play the games, you sit there watching other people playing games.

Twitch however has grown to one of the most heavily trafficed sites on the Internet, peaking around number 4 (after Netflix, Google and Apple), with 12,000,000,000 minutes of video watched each month in 2013. Not surprising that I know practically nothing about the site however seeing as the average age of their users is just 21.

Twitch is baked into the latest consoles from Sony and Microsoft and now some 1 million gamers upload their game play throughs which are watched by 55 million viewers.

The big question of course is what will Amazon do with Twitch, will they leave it to grow and as the Twitch team anticipate give them the financial clout and support to grow faster, or have Amazon got other plans for Twitch. One thing that seams obvious is the ability for Amazon to launch new consoles and game releases to the Twitch community, but is this enough on it’s own to justify the price tag?

If you’re a gamer you probably have more idea than us on how Amazon could monitize Twitch… over to you!

2 Responses

  1. Our gaming experts in the Seller Dynamics office (of which we have many) assure me that Twitch.TV is a great site.

    Gaming companies use it as a pre-release tool – to help promote reviews from known experts in the gaming sector. Basically they give access to the new game or latest release to influencers, the influencers then stream their comments. It lets gamers see what the game is like and whether or not its worth investing in.

    And its also used to gets tips and hints on how to play a game – voiceovers are there to help gamers who want to know more, find out more.

    Livestreaming is also in there so that makes it pretty appealing as well.

    So why would Amazon buy it… well its a huge and growing industry. The age of the user of the site might currently be 21 – but in the office here we have guys approaching 40 who are passionate gamers. These are men with kids… what can I say?

    Twitch gives Amazon another channel for sales and another place to advertise and promote. Advertsing… the next Amazon big thing. And it also probably rubs up Google the wrong way as well – I’m sure they would have wanted the site as well.

    Is it worth a Billion? No idea… if Jeff reckons it is, I think we should just nod in a wise and sage like manner.


  2. At first glance it seems over priced, but they’re clearly shrewd enough to see an opportunity. After having a quick browse, I came across 3 links to pre-order pages on other sites. All broken.

    I assume they are now broken as Amazon will be taking these links over and directing to the relevant pages on their site. They have a highly targeted audience from day one if that’s their game plan.


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