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Instagram now lets people add guests to live video streams

Instagram now lets people add guests to live video streams
From TechCrunch - October 24, 2017

Make way for more talking heads. Instagram, competing hot on the heels of other live video broadcasting apps, is enhancing its video streaming service with a new feature that it hopes will bring out more videos both from those of its 800 million users who might be too shy to use the feature on their own, and from those who cant resist an opportunity to be more social. Today, Instagram announced that it would let users who run live video streams add guests into their videos.

The rollout, part of the companys latest update, follows a limited test that Instagram started in Augustto smaller groups of users, as part of its bigger and gradual expansion of live video and messagesa feature that first launched a little under a year ago.

The feature works by letting people who are streaming a video to add anyone who is watching the video at that moment, by clicking on the add button in the corner of the screen. When a person gets added, he/she joins you in a separate window below yours on the screen. For now, it looks like you can only add one person in at a time (and you remove that person to add in another).

If you are on Instagram and you have friends who are using the live video + guest feature, they will show up as two circles stacked together in the stories status bar. These videos, as with regular live videos, can be discarded after they run, or saved to live on as Stories, which can in turn then be shared to Facebookas Facebook Stories. Still, however, no integrations with Instagrams other huge stablemate under the Facebook umbrella: WhatsApp.

The logic behind adding guests is clear for Instagram. Not only does it give users who might hesitate to use the video feature a little more confidence if they can have a friend with them, but it potentially adds more engagement to the mix. The status icon for a live broadcast gets sent out to the friend networks of both the video host and guest, potentially creating a much larger pool of would-be watchers.

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