The Electronic Entertainment Expo – more commonly referred to as E3 – is an annual trade show event for the video game industry held each June at the LA Convention Center. Video game developers, publishers and accessory manufacturers use the event to showcase new products or video game releases. Originally formed as an industry-only event, the expo has since expanded and opened its doors to the general public. Given the recent proliferation of esports, this was probably a good call. Tens of thousands of people attend E3 each year, but many more watch remotely thanks to the abundance of live streaming at E3.
What to Watch
Virtually every press conference at E3 is live streamed. If you can’t make it to the expo, tune in to catch live conferences from the major game and console developers, like Microsoft, Ubisoft, Electronic Arts and Bethesda. Nintendo will be broadcasting a pre-recorded event and Sony will be setting up camp off-site from the LACC.
Where to Watch
IGN holds the reins on E3 live streaming. They will be covering all the press conferences and virtually any live streamed event taking place on-site at E3. You can catch coverage on the E3 website, on the IGN website, on IGN’s Twitch channel – and pretty much any other IGN-related platform or channel. IGN’s stream will also be carried on Twitter as part of a partnership arrangement.
Live Streaming by the Numbers
In 2015, E3 streamed a total of 41 hours of content over the course of the 3-day event, which peaked at around 840,000 concurrent views. Keep in mind that E3 gets around 50,000 to 60,000 attendees.
In 2016, E3 hit almost 1,000,000 concurrent views on their live stream.
In 2017, E3 streamed 5,500 hours of content in various languages across various platforms. They peaked at 1,103,602 concurrent views during the Microsoft press release.
Why Live Streaming at E3 Has Grown
The gaming industry has exploded in recent years, especially due to the rising popularity of esports. While E3 is a US-based event, gaming itself is not – it’s global. The Entertainment Software Association, who organizes E3, was smart to realize that live streaming E3 would expand their audience – not cannibalize it. The growing interest in gaming is evident by the expanded live coverage of E3 going back to 2015 as well as the increased live streaming viewership.