When Twitch announced that some changes were coming down the pike, it cited video-on-demand as one of the key reasons for the controversial tweaks to its game-broadcasting service. Well, with the additions to the outfit's Xbox One app it looks like the dream of accessing your favorite channel's past streams and highlights -- instead of just live broadcasts -- are a reality. Twitch says that the archived 'casts will become a part of a given user's channel page "gradually," and that it's going to be a rollout that spans throughout 2015 as your favorite channels come online with "the new system." What's more, no estimate was given regarding a timeframe for the feature to hit other platforms. VOD is just scratching the surface, though.
Additionally, the Twitch app's been revamped to give you more control over your viewing habits. It's possible to drill down what broadcasts you see based on parameters like a high kill:death ratio in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, amount of ultra combos performed in Killer Instinct, or, in Destiny's case, Grimoire score. Those filters only apply to Xbox-native games, however -- Killzone: Shadow Fall and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U don't offer them.
And in addition to all that, you can follow entire games instead of just those streaming them too; pinning your favorites on the app's redesigned landing page allows you to sidestep the search interface. As Microsoft's Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb notes in the video below, the thrust of the update is enabling you to watch the best-quality streams (even in terms of video resolution) at all times.
Hryb says that this should also give new broadcasters a leg up in finding an audience, as well -- especially if they're proficient at a given game. After all, broadcasting to an empty room is pretty much the opposite of fun. And speaking of which, this update is focused exclusively on the viewing side of the equation.
Unlike the PlayStation 4's recent update, nothing's changed in terms of broadcasting options on Xbox One. It's a shame, really, because Sony's built-in tools are pretty robust now. Microsoft's offerings, on the other hand, are still incredibly basic and more than a little clunky. Here's to hoping that changes sooner rather than later.