YouTube Tests Live Streaming Channel


Google's YouTube on Monday kicked off a two-day test of a live channel, another indication the search giant is looking to bolster its push into TV with content tailored to a viewing in the living room.

The YouTube live streaming channel, which began broadcasting 8 a.m. (PT) on Monday, features content from four partners: Howcast, Next New Networks, Rocketboom and Young Hollywood.

"This new platform integrates live streaming directly into YouTube channels; all broadcasters need is a webcam or external USB/FireWire camera," YouTube said in a blog posting announcing the trial. The company added that based on the results of the initial live-streaming test, "we'll evaluate rolling out the platform more broadly to our partners worldwide."

The broader Google TV initiative aims to provide an Internet search and application platform for consumer electronics companies and pay-TV operators. The system, based in the Android operating system for mobile phones, is supposed to let TV viewers search across live listings, DVR recordings and Web content, as well as run third-party apps designed for the TV. 

YouTube also has introduced a feature called "Leanback," which is intended to provide a continuous stream of clips based on a user's preference for viewing on a TV set.

Meanwhile, Google has reportedly been in discussions with movie studios about offering movie rentals via YouTube.