How Do I Live Stream From My Computer?

By Margaret Worthington

A live stream is a term used to describe streaming video and/or audio onto the Internet for either the general public to view, or for a selected audience. There are many applications that allow you to do this, and several websites and services have sprung up that offer a wide variety of free live streaming services. With some knowledge and background on this topic, you can learn how to live stream from your computer or mobile device quickly and easily.

Live Streaming Services

There are many types of live streaming services available for use, such as and, two of the largest and most widely used live streaming services. These support live streaming over computers and mobile devices, such as cellphones. Other streaming services cater exclusively to mobile devices or computers, and don't provide any interoperability options. It's best to choose a single platform if you can, so that people who watch your live streams don't have to bounce back and forth between different services every time you produce a new video. Be sure to choose a service that offers the options you want, as some services let you engage in live chats with your viewers, send messages to other live streamers, and more. Some types of services, such as, give users the ability to monetize on their live streams, so if you want to start a website that charges for access to your live stream, a service like this would be a great place to start.

Equipment to Use

When doing a live stream, it's important to pick the right hardware for your purposes. If you want to live stream for a long period of time, get a webcam that allows you to record at a low resolution, so that all of your bandwidth is not taken up by the live streaming. This will result in a lower quality video stream, but it will allow you to maintain decent Internet access speeds the entire time you are live streaming. If you want to produce shorter live streams, or ones that require more detail in the picture, try using a higher quality webcam. If you are trying to do a live stream with a built-in webcam, you may want to consider switching to an external webcam, as these will usually have more options both in terms of hardware and software, and they can provide higher quality video than built-in webcams.

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