Facebook is getting really serious about Live. After rolling out the video streaming featureglobally in February, the company made a number of significant changes to its apps to make the feature more prominent, including a limited rollout of an overhauled, video-centered Android app.
Now, Facebook’s desktop version got an interesting new addition, called Live Video.
The feature, which showed up on top of the Apps list in my Facebook sidebar late on Wednesday, lets you browse Live streaming videos on a world map.
The map, which is also available at www.facebook.com/livemap/, is relatively basic, with blue dots representing Live videos — the bigger the dot, the more viewers the video has.
You can zoom in or out, with thumbnail-sized videos starting as soon as you move your mouse over a blue dot; click on one, and it will expand into a much larger version. The sidebar on the left offers a selection of live videos, though it’s unclear on what criteria they’re chose
We’re not sure whether the map shows all the Live videos that are currently streaming around the world (it seems unlikely, there are far too few), but it does offer some insight into where the service is popular. Obviously, this also depends on the time zone.
For example, I see the biggest concentration of blue dots in Thailand and Vietnam, indicating that people there are crazy about video streaming.
The Live Video map currently appears to be available only on the desktop version of Facebook; clicking on www.facebook.com/livemap/ on your mobile will get you a “page not found” error.
The Live Video map, while nifty, is far from the Live tab that recently intermittently appeared for some Android users.
Appearing dead center in the app’s main navigation bar, and turning the entire interface black as you scroll down through the videos, it was basically a video takeover of the app. The Live Video map is currently just a tiny icon in your sidebar, but a stronger video-related overhaul of Facebook seems inevitable.