Today Instagram has announced a new feature to their platform called “Live Rooms,” which allows up to 4 users to broadcast live simultaneously. Previously, users could only broadcast live with one other user, like on Facebook Live.
Instagram believes that “Live Rooms” will open up more creative opportunities in terms of live broadcast formats like live talk shows, expanded Q&As, interviews, jam sessions, live shopping experiences, and more.
The company promotes how the new feature will help creators make more money and the opportunity to live stream with multiple users.
Last year, Instagram launched badges in the early days of the COVID-19 crisis as a way for fans to display support for their favorite creators during live streams. Badges became more commonly available at three price points: $0.99, $1.99, and $4.99.
Fans can purchase badges to display their support for the hosts (one badge per person) and use other interactive features, including Shopping and Live Fundraisers in Live Rooms. Other tools, such as moderator controls and audio features, are being developed now, according to the company, and will be published in the coming months.
To start a Live Room, you’ll need to swipe left and select the Live camera option, then title the Room and tap the Room icon to add guests. There, you’ll see a list of people who’ve already requested to go live with you, and you’ll be able to search for other guests to add.
Once you start the Live Room, you’ll stay at the top of the screen while guests are added. Depending on your choice, the guests may be added all at once or individually. This opens up the possibility of introducing “surprise visitors” to live streams to keep viewers entertained.
The ability to invite more guests to a live stream can also help a creator expand their audience, as all of the guests’ followers and your own are informed about the Live Room.
Anyone who any of the Live Room participants has blocked will not be allowed to access the live stream for safety reasons. Guests who have had their live access removed in the past due to violations of Instagram’s Group Guidelines will now be unable to enter any Live Rooms.
During live broadcasts, the hosts can also report and block comments and use message filters to keep everyone safe.