Microsoft’s Twitch competitor, Mixer, has announced that they will be shutting down operations effective July 22 and will be encouraging current streaming partners to migrate to Facebook Gaming as the two tech giants deepen their relationship in the gaming space.
All partners are believed to be released from their exclusive contracts, and it’s possible that major streamers Shroud and Ninja are now free agents less than a year after signing their rumored blockbuster deals. Facebook Gaming has said that they will honor all current Mixer partner agreements, but Mixer’s own statement suggests that this announcement may be the first their partners are hearing of this move. Users with subscriptions or outstanding currency balances in Embers will receive Xbox gift card credit to spend with Microsoft.
The news comes after months of creators apparently asking for more features to be added to the four-year-old service and allegations surfacing over the weekend of a potentially hostile work environment for certain people of color. Facebook’s statement begins by addressing the feedback issue saying that streamers who migrate over will have “exclusive early access to new streaming features and tools” and a “direct line of feedback to the product and engineering team.”
This announcement is no doubt a stinging loss for many streamers who had hoped to make a splash on Mixer, but with its poor user numbers observers are likely not totally surprised. Stream Elements’ industry report in April showed that Twitch had 100% year-over-year growth, YouTube had 65% YoY growth, and Facebook Gaming had a whopping 238% YoY growth, but stood third place in total eyeballs. Mixer, on the other hand, managed a meager 0.2% on just over 37 million hours viewed.
It seems like Mixer is another another misstep by Microsoft similar to the release of the Zune, or Zoom overtaking Skype. Only time will tell what the future of the streaming landscape will look like, but this has Twitch fans crowing victory.