|Original author(s)||Ben Rubin|
|Developer(s)||Life On Air, Inc.|
iOS: 1.3 (May 2, 2015) [±]
|Operating system||iOS, Android|
|Type||Video streaming, social networking service|
Meerkat was a mobile app that enabled users to broadcast live video streaming through their mobile device. Once signed up, Meerkat users had the option of connecting their Facebook and Twitter accounts, to stream directly to their followers as soon as they went live. The app was available for both iOS and Android.
The app was released in February 2015, and quickly found popularity after its debut on the website Product Hunt, as well as widespread use during the South by Southwest Interactive Festival, both in March 2015.
On October 4, 2016, Meerkat was shut down and has been replaced by Houseparty.
Meerkat was developed by Life On Air, Inc., a team headed by founder and CEO Ben Rubin. The back-end powering the app was developed over the course of two years for a previous video product of theirs.
On October 4, 2016, The app was withdrawn from the App Store and Play Store, and all services have stopped. The Meerkat website now redirects to the creator's new app, Houseparty. The creators have said that the new app "has been in development for 10 months, and moves away from public broadcasts in favour of private chats."
In March 2015, weeks after the release of Meerkat, Twitter cut off Meerkat's access to its social graph, then announced the acquisition of the competing app Periscope. Twitter publicly launched Periscope on March 26, 2015. Apart from providing the similar functionality of live-streaming to users' Twitter followers, Periscope also gives users an option to let anyone play the stream back.
Various additional services and tools have been developed that make use of Meerkat. These included Katch.me, which, until April 22, 2016, allowed users to save their Meerkat stream via the cloud, and #lookats, which lets users view and chat on Meerkat directly from their browser.
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