As rival Twitch dominates the market, Facebook will shutter its standalone Gaming App

By Catherine Thorbecke, CNN Business

Facebook announced Tuesday that it is shutting down its standalone Gaming App this fall.

The app for video gamers and live-streamers, which has long struggled to compete with rivals like Amazon-owned Twitch, will no longer work on Oct. 28, according to a notice posted in the app on Tuesday. Beginning on that date, the Facebook Gaming App for iOS and Android will also no longer be available on app stores.

“We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to all of you for everything you’ve done to build a thriving community for gamers and fans since this app first launched,” the memo, signed by The Facebook Gaming team, stated. “This was a truly a community-led effort to bring new gaming features to Facebook.”

Users will still be able to connect with fellow gamers and watch streams from content creators in the Gaming tab within the general Facebook app, the notice added.

Facebook Gaming launched in 2018 with high hopes for its potential to leverage the social network’s massive audience. Despite luring some popular streamers over from rivals like Twitch via lucrative contracts, it ultimately struggled to find its place in the competitive video game streaming wars. Microsoft similarly shuttered its rival live-streaming gaming platform, Mixer, in July 2020.

Facebook Gaming represented just 7.9% of the market share for hours watched in the second quarter of 2022, according to industry research published earlier this month by StreamLabs. Twitch dominated the market share, with some 76.7% of hours watched and YouTube Gaming Live accounted for 15.4%.

The same report said that hours watched on Facebook Gaming declined 51% compared to the same period last year. Twitch, meanwhile, saw just a 13.4% year-over-year drop in hours watched on the platform.

Facebook-parent Meta did not immediately respond to CNN Business’ request for further comment on the matter Tuesday.

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