Until the news broke that Amazon had acquired Twitch for $970 million, I had had no idea that watching other people play video games was such a big business.
Twitch is a company that lets you watch video gaming as a spectator sport — it live-streams gamers gaming and allows viewers to interact during the games, to enormous success.The natural question :
Twitch now boasts 55 million monthly active users, a count that's only growing. A recent graph of the peak Internet traffic in the U.S. puts Twitch ahead of Hulu, Valve and Amazon, behind just Netflix, Google and Apple.
Why would Amazon pay almost a billion dollars for a start-up that allows people to watch others play "Pokémon"? Johnson says the numbers explain it all.
"Twitch had 43 percent of the live video streaming traffic by volume in a given week," says Johnson. "That’s above ESPN’s website, MLB.com, CNN."
Last year during a championship for the game "League of Legends", 32 million people were reportedly watching live.
"That’s more than the audience for the finales of Breaking Bad, 24 and The Sopranos combined," adds Johnson.