Stre.am is an Android app that hopes to offer everyone, regardless of which social media service they use, the ability to stream whatever it is they're watching, doing or enjoying at that moment in time. Stre.am is a live streaming video service that lets users share and watch on Android no matter which service they signed up with, be that Facebook, Google+ or Twitter. Much like Meerkat, Stre.am lets users broadcast whatever they want, comment and watch other people's stre.ams online in real time and a whole lot more. The app designed for all sorts of users, Stre.am could be the multi-platform streaming service that you've been waiting for, and it's free to use.
As with other Android apps, you'll need to download Stre.am from the Play Store. Once you've downloaded Stre.am, you'll need to create an account.
GOOGLE+ SIGN IN. That's right, with Stre.am you can sign up for an account using Google+, and it even goes ahead and searches for other Google+ friends that might be using Stre.am as well.
This is a great feature, no longer is there a need to spend time with Twitter to use Meerkat or Periscope, with Meerkat having only just launched on Android not too long ago. There are some suggested accounts to follow, which is nice as it can get you started with some accounts to help you show just what Stre.am is all about.
The menu layout in Stre.am is nice and easy to follow, there's no special way to do things, it works just like any other Android app does, really.
Different sections have different content in them of course, but everything is fairly obvious. A Reel is a collection of users' clips that they have allowed to be saved (more on that in a moment) and watching a video is nice and simple, with some straightforward icons to hit, like a like button and so on.
One thing to note about likes and views is that these update in real time, so when you're broadcasting something online, you will see - in real time - how many people are watching live or liking what you're doing. Over time, you will meet new users and your news feed will be full of interesting shares and videos.
When starting a broadcast there are a few things to remember and they're all fairly easy to get setup. When an icon is lit green, that action will be turned on, and an overview of your stream will be outlined before you get started.
This allows you to easily customize and control your live stream, something that other services just don't allow. This is just a test, but below we can see that I am live, and if I were broadcasting something other than my office's desk those real time counters for likes and views might start to go up.
Stre.am clearly has a lot going for it, not least because you can use it with no matter which social network. Us Android users are obviously fans of Google+ and it's nice to see the network represented in a streaming app like this. Stre.am's biggest strength is not really caring which network you use, it will still let your Twitter followers know just like Meerkat and Periscope do, but it has a fully functional app on Android and it couldn't be easier to get started with. The Feed, Reels and the ability to comment and share Stre.ams with other users is great, and altogether it's a very well polished app that puts other streaming apps to shame. Right now, its biggest challenge is to get more users onboard, and if they keep pushing the multi-platform angle, I'm sure people will come to the service.
- Speed (4/5) - Stre.am runs nice and quickly, and getting up and running takes little time at all.
- Theme (4/5) - With a good-looking Android theme and a UI that's easy to understand and use, there's nothing to complain about here.
- Features (4/5) - Right now, one of the biggest things holding Stre.am back is a lack of massive support from streamers, but this will change. Otherwise, this is one of the few multi-platform options available, and you don't have to be a Twitter user.
- Overall (4/5) - With a lot on offer, Stre.am can help free people from the tyranny of Twitter and it has a good quality recording algorithm and fast servers.
- Works with Google+, Facebook and Twitter accounts.
- Easy and clearly understandable options when setting up a stream make it nice and easy to control just exactly what you're broadcasting.
- No need to jump through hoops to get started, it takes little time at all to get started.
- Feed, Reels and friends lists make it nice and easy to share experiences with other Stre.amers.
- Needs more mainstream support, but this should be coming.
- An explanation on Reels and such would be good for the not-so tech-savvy among us.
Stre.am is a streaming service that is bursting with potential, and already I can see a service that is starting to take advantage of that. It works with Facebook, Google+ and Twitter to make it easy to share a stream with all of your friends, not just those with a Twitter account. Unlike Meerkat, Stre.am works just fine on Android, and there's no need for a Twitter account. Plus, it has a lot of extra features helping Stre.amers build a community and friend group quite easily on the service.