Apple introduced ReplayKit with iOS 9, allowing apps to offer users the ability to record and share gameplay or screencast videos directly from within the app. With iOS 10, Apple is introducing ReplayKit Streaming, allowing users to also live stream video of what’s on their iPhone screen for the first time.
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Apple unveiled ReplayKit live streaming during its Platforms State of the Union session at WWDC following the company’s public press event yesterday.
Like with ReplayKit, the new live feature will allow users to stream gameplay video from their iPhone while simultaneously using the device’s mic and front-facing camera to add their own video and audio commentary overlaid on the stream. And alongside the announcement, Apple is also bringing new support for the ReplayKit APIs to Apple TV games:
ReplayKit is an easy-to-use framework that enables players to share gameplay recordings or broadcast live games to players and viewers online. Watch how live broadcasting can help build community and create new fans for your apps and games. Understand the APIs to include player commentary via the microphone and front-facing camera on iPhone and iPad, and check out new support for ReplayKit on Apple TV.
Apps that implement the feature can live stream to services that support the extension. In the demo, Apple uses an extension from gameplay video platform Mobcrush to live stream from the game Olympus Rising:
When iOS 10 comes out this fall, any game developer can integrate livestreaming into their game with just a bit of extra code. And the best part is, that Mobcrush is going to be one of a few places you’ll be able to stream to when you go live… Mobcrush, along with flaregames, the developers behind Olympus Rising, were selected by Apple to showcase this new feature today at WWDC because of our collective experience in livestreaming, community and mobile games; a true honor.
Apple noted that adding the live streaming features will only require a few lines of code for developers already using ReplayKit. The feature could be useful for tutorials in addition to gameplay videos, and Apple has notably implemented ReplayKit into its new Swift Playgrounds app also unveiled this week. The iPad app, which teaches users how to code using Apple’s Swift language, allows users to record and share what they are doing in the app with a picture-in-picture of themselves from the front-facing camera overlaid on top. Although the live streaming component of ReplayKit isn’t in Playgrounds yet, it could in the future allow a teacher to give a live lesson explaining what they are doing in the app as they do it for a student or classroom.
Also new for gaming this year, Apple TV is getting support for four simultaneous game controllers, while Apple has updated controller policies to allow developers to require a game controller and avoid supporting the Siri Remote. And for Game Center, despite the app being removed form the homescreen in iOS 10, you’ll now be able to invite anyone to a game via messages, and new APIs for Game Center allow for “Sessions,”which Apple says “creates a persistent shared experience” for use in multiplayer games where users often come and go from gameplay sessions.