This is a minor adjustment that will have an impact on certain users. Twitter has announced that its video live-stream guests feature, which allowed users to include audio-only guests in their live-stream broadcasts, is being phased out.

As you can see from the first tweet in this sequence, Twitter introduced the feature in March of last year, in order to meet the growing demand for live-stream connectivity. Even when it first launched, Twitter’s audio guests feature lagged well behind what other applications had to offer.

At the time, Zoom was taking off as a live meeting platform, enabling multiple video participants at one time, while Instagram and Facebook both also provide streaming broadcasts with video guests (though it is worth noting that Facebook retired this option in late 2019, before bringing it back due to the pandemic).

Facebook Live with guests

That meant that individuals already had lots of alternatives for connecting to live broadcasts with full video functionality, and that Twitter’s audio guests option just didn’t catch on, and as a result, Twitter is eliminating it.

I mean, I’m guessing utilization has been limited; otherwise, Twitter would maintain it – but, as Twitter notes, the elimination of its live guests option would better help Twitter to improve its video playback quality, which has been a priority of late.

Interestingly, Facebook has just today announced a new option for gaming streamers to co-stream with friends, underlining demand for this type of interaction – so clearly, there is an interest in video connection. Just not video connection with audio, or at least, not enough to outweigh the server demands which would facilitate better video quality.

Again, it’s unlikely to be a significant loss, and if you want to have audio visitors, Twitter Spaces can now fill the void. You can still broadcast, whether on Twitter or elsewhere, and cater to all of the many usage possibilities; you simply can’t have audio invitees tapping into your Twitter feeds.

It may necessitate an adjustment in emphasis or preparation, but the consequences are likely to be minor.

The change will take effect today, according to Twitter.