Twitch is the most popular live streaming platform for gaming, with 140 million active monthly users. With that many users, the potential audience for your live streams is huge — but it also means there are thousands of other streamers to compete with. Twitch has also put new, controversial restrictions in place that have people questioning if it’s still the best streaming platform for them.
In this guide, we’ll cover four viable alternatives to Twitch for streamers looking to broadcast their content on another platform.
Why are streamers leaving Twitch?
In addition to Twitch’s high competition for viewing time, some streamers find its policies problematic. Some of the most recent restrictions that have streamers leaving Twitch for other platforms are:
- Banning all Twitch streamers from multistreaming, rather than just affiliates and partners. You can multistream to mobile-first platforms such as Instagram Live and TikTok, but not to web-first, “Twitch-like” platforms such as Facebook Live and YouTube Live.
- Limiting the size of ads and logos, which could inhibit streamers’ ability to earn revenue from sponsorships with brands. This new rule received immense backlash — the day after publishing it, Twitch backtracked and revised the rule.
The new ad rules introduced in June 2023 were the last straw for many Twitch streamers and they decided to stream elsewhere. In addition to these restrictions, generating substantial revenue or viewership on Twitch is difficult. Twitch only gives streamers 50% of the revenue they make from subscriptions, and the Twitch algorithm is designed to make discoverability difficult for small streamers.
What are the best alternatives to Twitch?
Although Twitch is the most popular, it’s by no means the only live streaming platform out there. There are many streaming sites to choose from, but if you want the opportunity to gain a decent-sized audience, these four are your best bet.
Kick.com is the newest live streaming platform to rival Twitch. It was founded in December 2022 and quickly gained popularity after signing deals with big-name streamers like Adin Ross, Paul “Ice Poseidon” Denino, Felix “xQc” Lengyel, Aaron “Ac7ionMan” Travis, Tyler “Trainwreckstv” Faraz Niknam, Kaitlyn “Amouranth” Siragusa, and several others. In just four months, Kick viewership grew by 404%. In the space of one month, active streamers on the platform went from five million to 12 million.
Kick has also made headlines because it gives content creators on its platform 95% of their subscription earnings; Twitch offers streamers 50% and YouTube offers 70%. Content on Kick revolves around popular video games, but there’s also a great deal of adult-themed content, such as gambling and casinos, and pools, hot tubs, and bikinis.
- 95% revenue split from subscriptions
- Lower barrier to entry (not as many streamers)
- More transparent rules than Kick
- Multistreaming allowed
- Much smaller audience than Twitch (for now)
- More difficult to stream on Kick with a console
2. YouTube Gaming
Video hosting website YouTube rolled out its live streaming feature in 2011, then in 2015 it launched YouTube Gaming to compete with Twitch. YouTube Gaming was eventually discontinued and folded into YouTube Live, but you can still explore gaming streams as part of the Gaming category. Live streamers from all genres, including gaming, can find a decent-sized audience on YouTube Live. The site has about 122 million U.S. users per day — 62% of U.S. YouTube users access the site daily.
Although YouTube Live no longer has a dedicated Gaming app, there are still features geared toward gamers as part of the main live streaming site. YouTube has a few advantages over Twitch as well, including better discoverability (YouTube videos are indexed in Google search results, Twitch videos are not), the ability to host and monetize on-demand videos, and no multistreaming restrictions. If you’re primarily interested in live streaming video games, however, you might be better off starting with Twitch.
- Streamers keep 70% of subscription revenue
- Live streams are hosted as videos on-demand (VODs) on your channel indefinitely
- Allows streaming in 4K
- Potential to earn more money with YouTube because you can monetize VODs
- You can create thumbnails for live streams
- Allows multistreaming
- Live chat is less dynamic that Twitch live chat
- Browsing live streams is more difficult on YouTube than Twitch
3. Facebook Gaming
Unlike Twitch and the other streaming platforms on this list, Facebook Gaming is hosted on the largest social networking site in the world. It has 2.9 billion monthly active users — meaning that approximately 37% of people on Earth use Facebook. If you already have a decent following on your Facebook page or in a Facebook group, you can promote your live streams to that audience.
Compared to Twitch, Facebook Gaming offers a better revenue share for streamers, has a more user-friendly mobile app, and makes it easier for new streamers to grow a community. Facebook also has more robust streaming analytics than Twitch so you can easily take a look at your stats. But while Facebook has a huge user base, many of those users aren’t watching live streams. When it comes to the sheer number of live stream viewers, Twitch has Facebook beat.
- Better mobile app than Twitch
- Higher content creator payouts
- More robust analytics
- No multistreaming limits
- The Facebook Gaming algorithm prioritizes streamers who pay for ad space
- Privacy issues: viewers are logged in with their Facebook accounts, which often use their real names
Trovo is the smallest streaming platform on this list, with less than 1% of the viewers Twitch has. If you’re looking to get tens of thousands of viewers on your streams, it’s simply not going to happen on Trovo — especially if you’re an English speaker, as about 90% of Trovo users are non-English speaking. The ratio between streamers and viewers on Trovo is pretty small, however, meaning if you’re just looking to get 10-20 viewers while still being the top channel in your stream category, it’s much more doable on Trovo.
Trovo’s revenue split is the same as Twitch’s, you get 50% as a streamer. But the requirements for monetization on Trovo are much lower than on Twitch: you only need five hours streamed and 20 followers to get started. On Twitch, you need 500 minutes (about 8.3 hours) of broadcast time and 50 followers. If you’re more into mobile gaming and streaming, Trovo is also likely a better fit for you than Twitch.
- Lower monetization requirements than Twitch
- The “New Streamers” filter makes it easier to get discovered
- Allows multistreaming
- You only keep 50% of donations (you get 100% of donations on Twitch)
- Significantly fewer viewers than on Twitch
Stream to multiple platforms with Restream
One of Twitch’s biggest drawbacks is its ban on multistreaming. Kick, YouTube Live, Facebook Live and Trovo all let you simulcast your live stream to other platforms — so although these four platforms might have smaller audiences than Twitch, if you stream to multiple places at once, you can double or triple your potential audience size.
Restream makes multistreaming easy. It works with each of the streaming platforms mentioned here, plus more than 30 others. Connecting your live streaming channels to Restream takes less than two minutes. You can either go live using Restream’s browser-based live streaming studio, or you can use Restream’s multistreaming plug-in with another streaming software like OBS Studio.
When you use Restream Studio to multistream, you can:
- Add custom graphics including backgrounds, overlays and logos
- Stream with no additional bandwidth required
- Invite guests to your live stream
- Share your screen or choose different screen layouts
- Display a chat overlay on your stream
- Stream in Full HD
- Upload pre-recorded videos and set them to go live
- Get access to live streaming metrics
- Display the live chat as an overlay
Twitch is still the dominant platform when it comes to live streaming video games. But it’s not the only one. If you’re looking for another platform to stream to for whatever reason, try Kick, YouTube Live, Facebook Live or Trovo. You can also use Restream to multistream to several platforms at once.