updated 01:15 pm EDT, Fri April 8, 2011
YouTube Live now always available
YouTube wrapped up its week by making YouTube Live a permanent fixture of its service. The once test-only service will now always be available and both show whichever shows are live now as well as allow marking events on the calendar to watch later. Subscriptions here work to notify viewers of streams that are coming up, not just once they've been posted.
The introduction was matched by a beta platform for live video recording. Its test version will let some YouTube partners with accounts "in good standing" broadcast live on their own. Its expansion would widen to cover "thousands" of partners in the months ahead to make sure the streaming was smooth.
YouTube's entry into the category comes relatively late versus services like Justin.tv, Qik, and Ustream that have made their businesses on live streaming. It's unlikely to follow these companies into making live video a primary source, but it could eventually provide YouTube more of a presence on mobile devices where the live support carries more weight.
Google has been rumored planning live streams as a way of generating revenue, including live sports. Talk of premium channels of professionally made content hasn't made mention of live video but could use it to encourage regular viewership.