Facebook is muscling in on Twitter's hottest app

Facebook is expanding its “Live Video” service, which lets users stream what they are doing in real-time, to everyone in the United States, according to a company blog post.

The new service is built into the Facebook app and appears next to the options to add a photo, video, tag a person, or add an emotion to a status.

When pressed, the stream goes live and friends are alerted to the live video, which they can then watch, like, and comment on.

Twitter also has a similar service, called Periscope, which it acquired for around $50 million (£34 million) last year. Twitter recently integrated Periscope streams into the main app, bringing live video streaming front-and-centre for the social network.

Facebook’s Live Video steam is available to friends and followers. News organisations can broadcast to fans and followers in real-time, with a notification being sent to users when the stream goes live. The Verge, a technology blog, has been testing the feature extensively, for example.

International imageFacebookFacebook’s Live Video app.

Periscope had around 10 million users, as of late 2015, and the integration into Twitter, along with a heavy focus on the service, has likely pushed that number higher.

However, Facebook has a long history of releasing apps before shutting them down a few months later. Paper, a new take on news reading, was a Facebook-made app that launched in February 2014 and now lays dormant, having not received an update since March 2015.

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