While Netflix is the undisputed champion of generating Web traffic in the United States, there’s another video-streaming service that’s quickly moving up the peak traffic ranks: Twitch, the video service that lets gamers live-stream their gameplay to thousands of viewers simultaneously.
Unlike Netflix or competitors Hulu and Amazon, Twitch can’t just licence film and television content that’s popular enough to draw in an audience.
Yet according to data from network researcher DeepField published at the Wall Street Journal, its share of peak U.S. Web traffic has passed not only Hulu and Amazon but even Facebook and its 147 million daily active users.
This screenshot of Twitch’s homepage perfectly captures how the site is generating so much traffic. When looking at those numbers, keep in mind that on any given day, CNN might have ~280,000 live viewers — and that there are thousands of “channels” broadcasting live content on Twitch right now.
For context, this chart from the Wall Street Journal piece shows the 10 sites moving the most data around in the U.S. Note that Valve‘s Steam, which is basically iTunes for PC gamers, is also generating a massive amount of traffic:
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.