Twitter plans to no longer offer a standalone Periscope experience. In a blog post the company shared today, Twitter says it will discontinue the Periscope mobile apps by March 2021.
“The truth is that the Periscope app is in an unsustainable maintenance-mode state, and has been for a while,” the company says in the post. “Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen declining usage and know that the cost to support the app will only continue to go up over time.” It notes it would have made an announcement sooner if not for all the projects that got reprioritized due to everything that happened in 2020.
While they won’t go offline until next year, Twitter has already started winding down the apps. An update the company released today prevents new users from signing up for an account. Per a FAQ the company posted, any broadcasts you shared through Twitter will live on as replays, and the company says you’ll be able to download an archive of any content you recorded before March 2021. Moreover, the Periscope website will stay up as a read-only archive of videos people broadcast publically. And for those still set on streaming over Twitter, you’ll be able to do so through the app’s Twitter Live feature.
Rumors that Twitter planned to shut down Periscope started to circulate last week when developer and frequent feature sleuth Jane Manchun Wong found code snippets referencing a shutdown notice within the app. Twitter acquired Periscope back in 2015 before the app was even available to the public. In 2016, the company went on to make most of Periscope’s functionality available directly through its main app. In that time, Periscope enjoyed a brief moment where it was one of the more popular apps people downloaded, even going so far as to play a part in the shutdown of rivals like Meerkat. However, it’s since been overshadowed by platforms like Twitch and YouTube.