Microsoft is shutting down its Twitch competitor and partnering with Facebook going forward


Microsoft is sunsetting its video game streaming service, Mixer, and transitioning to a partnership with Facebook.

As of July 22, Mixer “sites and apps will redirect users to Facebook Gaming,” the company said in a blog post on June 22.

The move, Microsoft said, is a direct reaction to the company’s lack of success with growing Mixer’s audience.

“Ultimately, the success of Partners and streamers on Mixer is dependent on our ability to scale the service for them as quickly and broadly as possible,” Xbox lead Phil Spencer said on the Xbox blog. “It became clear that the time needed to grow our own livestreaming community to scale was out of measure with the vision and experiences we want to deliver to gamers now, so we’ve decided to close the operations side of Mixer and help the community transition to a new platform.”

Going forward, Microsoft said, Mixer will be part of Facebook Gaming.

What this means for viewers and streamers alike is that Mixer accounts will be transitioned to Facebook Gaming accounts, and streams will be posted on Facebook Gaming going forward.

Like Amazon’s Twitch, Facebook Gaming is a video game streaming portal and app. Rather than a dedicated website, Facebook Gaming is built directly into the social media service.

The Facebook Gaming homepage when accessed on a desktop.

Screenshot/Facebook Gaming
Despite Mixer being built into the Xbox One user interface, and Microsoft spending tens of millions of dollars on exclusivity deals with major streamers, Mixer has consistently failed to compete with Twitch in viewer numbers.

Even after paying Tyler “Ninja” Blevins an estimated $20 to $30 million (R470 to R520 million), and an unknown sum to Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek, Mixer still struggled to bring in viewership numbers anywhere near that of Twitch.

Going forward, Microsoft said, all those exclusivity deals are null. “Facebook Gaming is welcoming all Mixer Partners,” a statement from Microsoft sent to Business Insider said. “Ultimately it’s up to them as they think about the next step for their careers, in the same way it’s up to all Mixer Partners.”