A notification telling you to tune in and, in a moment, you’re with thousands of others watching your favourite vlogger giving a live update …or with a group of friends at that gig you couldn’t make …or watching an expert presenting to a class of global students. Our July app of the month is Periscope, a video app that lets you share and watch videos as they happen.
Periscope is designed to make broadcasting live video as simple as possible. Every time you ‘go live’, your followers are instantly notified – they can then join, comment and send you hearts in real time. The more hearts you get, the higher they flutter on the screen.
How would you describe periscope in 140 characters?
The best place to share and experience live video. A picture is worth 1,000 words, but video can take you somewhere and show you around
Mobile video streaming isn’t a new idea but it has got very big, very quickly – what do you think are the factors that have driven that sudden adoption?
We live in an age where most people are walking around with a smartphone and a reliable internet connection, the advances in hardware and infrastructure created the perfect set of circumstances for streaming live mobile video to thrive.
Obviously a large part of creating a great app is creating a fantastic user experience, can you give us a couple of examples where your UX design has made a difference to how people use the platform?
The mechanics of Periscope are really straightforward. Starting a broadcast is as simple as tapping a button and then anyone who follows you gets a notification to tune in. The Global feed empowers viewers to spin the globe and teleport anywhere in the world. The hearts provide the broadcaster with positive feedback and are a lighthearted way for viewers to show support.
What kind of considerations do you to take into account when designing for Android as opposed to other platforms?
We wanted to create a native Android app that felt very much at home on the Android platform. We embraced Google’s material design guidelines to make sure the app felt very Android, but at the same time, very distinctly Periscope.
We also respect that Android has a diverse set of screen sizes, so we worked to make sure Periscope looks and works great on a variety of different phones. On a lower level, Android has many different chipsets and hardware configurations. This makes it tricky to ensure that our video code works on all devices, but this is something we’re constantly improving on.
You can try Periscope for yourself by downloading it from the Google Play Store.