Opinion: Facebook to start Live Audio feature

Facebook is entering the live audio space early next year and is working with the BBC and Global to launch the service.

In a similar way to how users can currently go live with video, Facebook will allow four-hour blocks of live audio to be streamed via its platform.

Some are saying this is Facebook’s first step into the radio world, but the company points to story telling, interviews and book reading as examples of use. A four-hour mix of the greatest hits probably won’t be the best use of the new service.

Facebook also says people might choose Live Audio if they don’t have good enough signal for Live Video.

We say this is a perfect way for radio to get inside the world’s biggest social media platform, a way to connect to your Facebook fans like never before. Instead of posting a link to hosted audio – stream it live.

That big Friday morning 8.15am competition reveal? Share it live on Facebook. The special feature you’ve been promoting all week? Let your Facebook fans hear it in real time as it is broadcast. We’re not sure how the PRS, or football commentary rights will work, but I’m sure we’ll find out in time.

“Over the next few weeks, we’ll be testing Live Audio with several partners, including BBC World Service, LBC, Harper Collins, and authors Adam Grant and Brit Bennett. Early next year, we plan to make this new format more broadly available to publishers and people,” Facebook blogged.

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