On Monday, Instagram made an official announcement through its blog stating that it has started allowing up to four people to live stream together in virtual “rooms,” following in the footsteps of group-broadcast rising stars like Clubhouse, which has gained tremendous popularity in the pandemic-era of communication.
According to Instagram, the Live Rooms feature allows four participants to engage in real time broadcasts that other Instagram users can tune into. “Previously, you could go live with only one other person in a stream, but we’re now letting you ‘double up’ on your live broadcast,” the company said in a blog post.
“We hope that doubling up on Live will open up more creative opportunities – start a talk show, host a jam session or co-create with other artists, host more engaging Q&As or tutorials with your following, or just hang out with more of your friends.”
Live Rooms additionally provides creators who are shut off from real-world venues by the pandemic an opportunity to make money. With Live Rooms, viewers can buy badges for the hosts and use other interactive features like Shopping and Live Fundraisers. “We’re also exploring more interactive tools such as offering moderator controls and audio features that will be available in the coming months,” the blog added.
Instagram also added that, “In the past year, special moments have happened on Live, including informational talks about science and COVID-19 guidelines, interviews with celebrities and record-breaking rap battles. Creators of all kinds — from fitness instructors to musicians, beauty bloggers, chefs and activists, all relied on Live to create moments and bring people together to reach their communities in creative ways. We can’t wait to see what more creativity comes from this highly-requested update.”
“This update is another step forward in giving creators more ways to reach and interact with their audiences. Live Rooms will soon be available globally for everyone on Instagram,” the blog read.
Explaining how it works, Instagram gave a detailed set of steps on how to start a Live Room! Swipe left and pick the Live camera option. Then, add a title and tap the Rooms icon to add your guests. You’ll see people who have requested to go live with you, and you can also search for a guest to add. When you start a Live Room, you’ll remain at the top of the screen when you add guests. As a broadcaster, you can add up to three guests at once or one by one, and add a surprise guest as the third participant later!