meerkat_androidMeerkat was launched last year in March 2015 was pretty much the darling at SXSW. However it seems that the company did not get to enjoy their success for too long, because shortly after Twitter launched their Periscope app which more or less does the same thing, with the added bonus of being able to play the stream back.

For those unfamiliar, Meerkat and Periscope are apps that lets users livestream video wherever they are from. However it seems that due to Periscope’s popularity, no doubt with the help of Twitter’s branding and its user base, Meerkat has decided to pull out of the livestream race and will now focus their efforts on being a video social network instead.

In an email Meerkat’s CEO Ben Rubin sent to his company’s investors, “The year started on a high note. … But over the year, it became rougher waters. Mobile broadcast video hasn’t quite exploded as quickly as we’d hoped. The distribution advantages of Twitter/Periscope and Facebook Live drew more early users to them away from us and we were not able to grow as quickly alongside as we had planned.”

At the moment Rubin is staying mum on his plans for the app’s future, except to say that it will be a video social network. From Re/code’s report, they have described it similar to other platforms like Google Hangouts or Skype, with a focus on smaller group chats with people you actually know. While Meerkat’s decision to pull out of the race is good news of Twitter and Periscope, they do have a new contender in the form of Facebook Live, which once again is similar in its functionality.

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