"It is a dream that a lot of people have been thinking about for a long time," Sideman told me, relaxing at a conference table in his midtown New York office."It is a holy grail." In the 1990s Sideman studied art and technology in New York.Along with broadcasting, Abuhamdeh texts and talks on the phone with his followers. Then in May of last year it suddenly clicked, exploding from less than 10 million monthly visitors to more than 100 million in the span of just four months.More than 35,000 hours of live video are now streamed on the service each day, and more than a million dollars in tips flow through its platform each month.
Users can also give premium goods, which cost money to acquire.Of course, anyone getting premium goods outside the partner program gets no cut. He tunes in to the channel of a user named Flippin Ginja, a red-headed teen and amateur gymnast who is lounging on his porch swing."Guys, I’ve been drinking too much water," he tells his smartphone camera.In June of last year, on a whim and mostly out of boredom, Abuhamdeh mounted his phone next to the register and began to broadcast his day on You Now, a live streaming service. People would walk up and pay, he would ring them up, and then as they left, nail them with a zinger spoken to the camera. But I was nervous, I felt like there were people watching. It was weird.” After a few weeks of broadcasting he began to find his rhythm.It initially piggybacked off of Twitter, but was quickly cut off, likely because Twitter has its own plans for a live streaming service built around a company it just acquired, Periscope.We’ve finally hit a tipping point where live streaming makes sense, both as a killer feature on a platform like Twitter, but also as a standalone business like You Now. "The reason is the rise of i OS and Android," says Emmett Shear, the CEO of Twitch.With the press of a few buttons Sideman tips Ginja the equivalent of , along with a message asking him to flip for Ben. Ben this flip is dedicated to you, for being so awesome.Everybody say, 'We love Ben' in the chat." While the chat lights up with people chanting my name, Ginja dashes down his steps onto his front lawn, does an amazing corkscrew backflip, does it again for good measure, and then heads back to the porch, where he continues bantering a mile a minute, skimming the comments like a pro, dispensing jokes, attention, and affection in just the right doses.He tried and failed to launch a general purpose live streaming service with Justin. Eventually he pivoted into gaming, a niche where being tied to a desktop computer made sense.But now the mobile market is mature enough for a sea change.