TikTok has started testing a new desktop streaming app named TikTok Live Studio with a small number of users, TechCrunch reported yesterday. The Windows app will allow users to stream to TikTok Live from their PC, interact with viewers in the chat, and add different items to a scene including mobile and game captures.
The China-based social network said to TechCrunch that TikTok Live is only available in select Western markets for a few thousand users, and there’s no public download link. TikTok already has a presence on the web and the Microsoft Store for Windows PCs, but the app has pretty much remained mobile-focused since launch. Moreover, TikTok’s live streaming feature is currently restricted to users with at least 1,000 followers.
The independent journalist Zach Bussey shared a couple more screenshots of TikTok Live on Twitter (via The Verge), adding that the app is “super basic in its current state.” Still, TikTok has become increasingly popular with teenagers and young adults, and TikTok Live shows that the platform is getting ready to claim a bigger share of the live streaming pie.
It’s super basic in its current state.
Has both Landscape and Portrait Scenes.
Sources include Game Capture, Mobile Capture, Video Capture, Program Capture, and some text/images. No browser sources, or alerts.
Emojis are limited to the stock ones. pic.twitter.com/oOHwUbSdUF
— Zach Bussey (@zachbussey) December 15, 2021
It remains to be seen if TikTok can be taken seriously as a competitor to Twitch and other live streaming platforms, but this new desktop app is a good first step. Twitch also released its own Twitch Studio desktop streaming app a couple of months ago, which provides a good alternative to power user solutions like OBS or XSplit.
Microsoft infamously tried to acquire TikTok last year after the Trump administration raised some security concerns regarding TikTok’s use in the US. The deal eventually fell through, and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently admitted that these acquisitions talks were “the strangest thing I’ve ever worked on.”