How to go live on Facebook from your computer or mobile device

ShutterstockYou can go live on Facebook to broadcast video in real time.
  • You can go live on Facebook to livestream video using your mobile device’s camera or computer’s webcam.
  • To go live on Facebook, create a new post and tap “Live” or “Live Video.”
  • You can go live on Facebook at any time, as long as you have a cellular connection or Wi-Fi.
  • You can also control who can watch your Facebook Live video, and whether to publish it to your Facebook page after recording is completed.
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Facebook Live lets you livestream video anytime and almost anywhere – from home, at work, on vacation, or while walking down the street.

It’s a way to talk directly to your friends, or to show something on Facebook in “real time” as it’s happening.

You can go live on Facebook from a mobile device or computer. While a Wi-Fi connection is recommended for the best video quality, it isn’t absolutely needed; you can go “Live” on your phone with just a cellular connection.

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How to go live on Facebook on a mobile device

While this process depicts how to go live on Facebook from your iPhone, you can follow the same steps for an Android phone or any other mobile device like a tablet.

1. In the new post field, tap “Live” (it’s next to a red camera icon). If you prefer, you can tap on “What’s on your mind” and then tap “Live Video.”

Facebook liveDave Johnson/Business InsiderFacebook wants you to livestream video, so Facebook Live is built prominently into the posting tool.

2. If this is your first time, Facebook may ask for permission to use your camera and microphone. If so, grant permission.

3. Select who should be your audience. Tap the downward arrow to the right of “To:” and choose who can see your video – it can be everyone (Public), just your friends, specific groups you belong to, and more. Then tap the X to close this window. (If you want to test Facebook Live without letting anyone see you, you can choose “Only me.”)

Live 2Dave Johnson/Business InsiderYou can choose who the audience for your video will be – from everyone on Facebook to only yourself.

4. Enter a short description for your video.

5. When you are ready, tap “Start Live Video.”

Live 3Dave Johnson/Business InsiderWhen you’re ready to broadcast, tap ‘Start Live Video.’

6. After a moment, you should see a red indicator in the corner of the screen labelled “Live,” along with indications of anyone who is watching your video.

7. You can use the tools at the bottom of the screen while you are broadcasting. You can add filters to the video, flip to the front-facing camera and back again, and more. If you need additional light, the lightning bolt will brighten the screen, which will reflect off your face for a brighter video. You can also type comments while you broadcast as well.

8. When you are done, tap “Finish.”

After broadcasting, you can tap “Share” to post it to your Facebook page, where it will appear with all of your other content. Anyone with permission to view it can watch the complete video. If you don’t want to post it, tap “Delete” instead.

How to go live on Facebook on a computer

You can go live from a PC or a Mac as well – as long as you have a webcam connected to your desktop computer or laptop.

1. Go to Facebook in your web browser.

2. In the Create Post section at the top of the screen, click the button with the three dots. Your posting options should enlarge.

3. Click “Live Video.”

Facebook liveDave Johnson/Business InsiderYou can go live in a web browser as long as your computer has a webcam or similar camera connected.

4. If this is the first time you’ve tried going live from your computer, you may need to give Facebook permission to use your camera and microphone. Grant permission as needed.

5. You should now see yourself in a video window. On the right, enter a description of your video event, and choose your audience (such as Public, Friends, or a group you belong to).

6. When you’re ready, click “Go Live.”

Live 5Dave Johnson/Business InsiderIf you want to talk to an audience from the comfort of your office chair, use Facebook Live on your laptop or desktop computer.

7. When your video is done, click “End Live Video.”

8. The video will automatically be added to your timeline when you click “Done.” If you don’t want to publish it, click “Delete Video” instead.

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