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The Rise and Fall of Mixer: Challenges and Impact

Live streaming has come a long way since the early days of the internet. With the rise of platforms like YouTube and Twitch, people can now broadcast their content to millions of viewers around the world.

Mixer is a relatively new player in this space, but it has quickly gained popularity among content creators. In this article, we will explore what Mixer is, its features and functionality, how to use it as a viewer and creator, and the history and ownership of Mixer.

to Mixer

Mixer is a live streaming platform that allows content creators to broadcast their video in real-time to their audience. It was first launched in 2016 under the name Beam, founded by Matthew Salsamendi and James Boehm.

One of the primary features of Mixer is its low-latency streaming technology, which reduces the delay between the streamer and their viewers. This makes it ideal for gaming and other interactive content, as viewers can easily react and provide feedback to the streamer.

Overview of Mixer’s features and functionality

Mixer offers several unique features that set it apart from other live streaming platforms. Here are a few of the most notable:


Interactive streaming: Mixer allows viewers to actively participate in the stream by using interactive buttons such as “Sparks” and “Embers.” These virtual currencies can be used to support the streamer and unlock additional features during the stream. 2.

Co-streaming: This feature enables multiple streamers to combine their broadcasts into a single viewing experience. This is ideal for gaming events or multiplayer games where viewers can watch the perspective of each player.

3. HypeZone: A channel that showcases the most intense moments of popular games, HypeZone will automatically switch between streamers who are close to winning a match, keeping the viewers on the edge of their seats.

4. Chat rooms: Mixer has several chat rooms where viewers can interact with the streamer and other viewers in real-time.

It creates a more engaging experience for those watching the stream.

How to use Mixer as a viewer and creator

Using Mixer as a viewer is relatively simple. One can access Mixer through its website or mobile apps, which are available for iOS and Android devices.

To watch a particular stream, one can search for the relevant content on the platform and start watching it. One can also create an account to follow channels, customize their viewing experience, and participate in chats.

Using Mixer as a content creator requires a bit more effort. Firstly, one needs to create a Mixer account and set up their stream.

Once one has set up their stream, they need to select a streaming option and can start broadcasting. One can customize their broadcast with overlays, alerts, and widgets.

Mixer also offers several guidelines on how to improve the quality of the stream.

History and Ownership of Mixer

Founding of Mixer and its initial success

Beam was founded in 2014 by Matthew Salsamendi and James Boehm while they were working on Minecraft servers. The two founders were not satisfied with the quality of available live streaming platforms and decided to create their own.

Beam was initially focused on the hosting business but later pivoted to the live streaming platform. Beam quickly gained popularity, thanks to its low-latency streaming technology.

This technology allowed streamers to interact with their viewers in real-time, creating a more engaging experience. In 2015, Beam was accepted into TechCrunch’s Disrupt NY Startup Battlefield and went on to win the competition.

It was at this point that Beam caught the attention of Microsoft. Acquisition by Microsoft and rebranding

to Mixer

In August 2016, Microsoft announced that it had acquired Beam.

With the acquisition, Beam was rebranded as Mixer. The name “Mixer” was chosen to represent the platform’s commitment to bringing people together and creating an inclusive environment.

Microsoft integrated Mixer into its Xbox devices, allowing users to easily access the platform. This move helped Mixer gain traction among gamers, who were the primary audience for Xbox devices.

Mixer continued to innovate, introducing new features like co-streaming and HypeZone, further cementing its position as a leading live streaming platform.


In conclusion, Mixer is a live streaming platform that offers several unique features for content creators and viewers. Its low-latency streaming technology, interactive streaming, and co-streaming, make it a popular choice among gamers and other content creators.

The history of Mixer is an inspiring story of two friends who dared to take on the giants of the industry and came out on top. With its acquisition by Microsoft, Mixer’s future looks bright.

If you are a content creator or viewer looking for a new live streaming platform, you should definitely give Mixer a try.

Challenges Faced by Mixer

Mixer may have been one of the leading live streaming platforms in the market, but it also faced many challenges throughout its lifetime. The following subtopics outline the challenges that led to the shutdown of Mixer.

Intense competition from platforms like Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming

Mixer faced fierce competition from established platforms like Twitch and YouTube Gaming, which had a larger user base and more recognized streamers. Twitch, in particular, had become the go-to platform for game streaming and esports events, attracting millions of daily active users.

YouTube Gaming had also invested heavily in improving its platform, providing a seamless and engaging experience for its viewers. Facebook Gaming had entered the market only recently but had an advantage with millions of users who frequented the social media platform.

Facebook Gaming had also secured a deal with Microsoft for the exclusive streaming rights of content creators like Ninja and Shroud. With more resources at their disposal, these platforms could offer more to their users, making it harder for Mixer to compete.

Lack of community building and engagement on Mixer

One of the significant challenges for Mixer was building a strong community of content creators and viewers. Though Mixer had launched several features to engage viewers, it lacked the deep-rooted community that platforms like Twitch had built over the years.

Content creators were not attracted to the platform, as it offered lesser opportunities for monetization compared to other platforms. Though Mixer did have several high-profile streamers, they were not enough to drive viewership and create a thriving community on the platform.

Mixer struggled to attract and retain content creators, which ultimately impacted its viewership.

Employee turnover and morale issues at Mixer

Mixer faced several internal issues in terms of employee turnover and morale. The departure of its founders, Matthew Salsamendi and James Boehm, was a significant blow to the company.

On top of that, the platform struggled to maintain a positive work culture, resulting in several culture clashes. Several high-level executives left the company, making it harder to steer the company in the right direction.

Moreover, the platform faced accusations of racism, leading to an internal investigation. These internal issues affected the morale of its employees and contributed to the decline of the platform.

Technical issues and high costs of maintaining Mixer

Mixer’s platform suffered multiple technical issues, including several outages, which hurt its reputation and user engagement. The platform struggled to maintain a stable service for its users, particularly during high traffic events such as esports competitions.

Maintaining the technical infrastructure of the platform required significant investment and maintenance costs. Mixer lacked the resources to continually improve its service, which contributed to its inability to compete in the market.

Strategic shift towards other products by Microsoft

Microsoft began to shift its focus towards other products such as xCloud and game streaming on Xbox One, which had higher growth potential. Mixer, though successful, was not a priority for Microsoft, and it faced several budget cuts and reductions in marketing spend.

The company was not able to sustain significant investments in the platform. Mixer’s Shutdown and Impact

Announcement and implementation of Mixer’s shutdown

In June 2020, Microsoft announced that it would be shutting down Mixer and redirect its users to Facebook Gaming.

The shutdown was sudden and unexpected, as Mixer had invested heavily in securing high-profile streamers and improving its features. Microsoft cited the inability to keep up with the intense competition, lack of community building, and high costs as reasons for the shutdown.

Effects on content creators and viewer migration to other platforms

The shutdown of Mixer had a significant impact on the content creators who had built their livelihoods on the platform. Several high-profile streamers, including Ninja and Shroud, had signed exclusive deals with Mixer, which had brought them over from Twitch.

The shutdown left these streamers without a platform to stream on, and they had to renegotiate their contracts. Viewers also migrated to other platforms like Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming.

The sudden shutdown left viewers without the content that they had enjoyed and followed on the platform. Facebook Gaming offered to transfer Mixer’s partners to their platform and matched their current contracts, offering them a new opportunity to continue streaming.

Microsoft’s reasons for shutting down Mixer

Microsoft’s reasons for shutting down Mixer were primarily focused on the lack of growth potential for the platform. Mixer faced intense competition from established platforms like Twitch, and despite significant investments, the platform was not able to attract enough users or sustain growth.

The lack of community on the platform and high costs of maintenance were also significant factors contributing to its shutdown. Moreover, Microsoft focused on other products such as xCloud, which had higher growth prospects, and decided that Mixer was not a priority for the company.

The decision was a strategic shift in focus towards products that had higher growth potential and fit better with Microsoft’s overall strategy.


Mixer’s unexpected shutdown marked the end of the platform’s journey in the live streaming market. The platform faced several internal and external challenges, including intense competition, lack of community building, technical issues, and high costs of maintenance.

Microsoft cited these factors as reasons for the shutdown, leading to the migration of content creators and viewers to other platforms. While Mixer had made significant strides in the market, ultimately, it could not keep up with the rapidly changing market dynamics.

In conclusion, Mixer, a live streaming platform, faced several challenges throughout its existence, including intense competition from platforms like Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming, a lack of community building and engagement, employee turnover and morale issues, technical issues, and a strategic shift by Microsoft. These challenges ultimately led to the shutdown of Mixer, impacting content creators and viewers who had invested in the platform.

The story of Mixer serves as a reminder of the dynamic nature of the live streaming industry and the importance of adapting to the changing landscape. It also highlights the significance of building a strong and engaged community to sustain a platform’s success.

While Mixer may no longer be in operation, its impact and challenges provide valuable insights for future players in the live streaming market.

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