Live broadcasting once required cameras, cables and satellite trucks. Today, just a smartphone will do.
Mobli, an Israeli company with a $60-million dollar investment from billionaire Carlos Slim, updated their app Thursday to allow users to stream live video from their mobile phone for a large audience of users to watch in real time.
Apple's(AAPL) FaceTime and Skype have made live video conversations a reality, but Mobli promises that its technology has the potential to let millions of users see exactly what your smartphone lens is seeing."
Mobli's CEO and Founder, Moshe Hogeg, hears lots of comparisons of his photo-sharing app to its more famous competitor Instagram, which is owned by Facebook(FB). Hogeg believes the app's new video-streaming feature will set his company apart from the crowded photo-sharing market.
"There's Coca-Cola(KO) and there's Pepsi(PEP); there's WhatsApp and there's WeChat," Hogeg says. "And we think the world is big enough to have a few companies in the same industry."
Mobile apps have become ubiquitous for protests from Cairo to Kiev to Caracas -- enabling demonstrators to capture and then share ground-level images. With this app, a protester could broadcast non-stop video of exactly what he or she was seeing live.
For the moment, you need to have the Mobli app to watch a live broadcast, but the company says in a matter of weeks anyone will be able to watch the streaming video on a website regardless of whether they're a Mobli user or not.
"The main reason I think live streaming will work is that for the first time the infrastructure allows you to do broadcasting in a way that it never allowed you before: the speed of the Internet connection and the quality of the devices we have in the market," Hogeg says.
He acknowledges that in some countries where mobile internet connections are still slow, this service won't but ideal just yet.
With the tens of millions of dollars telecom magnate Carlos Slim has invested in the company, the expectation to begin generating revenue weighs large. Mobli says soon it will also launch a pay-per-view aspect to the new video feature where celebrities could charge users for viewing live performances. Mobli would take part of that payment.
"If an artist wants to do a private show around the world to sing -- not to 50,000 people, but to a million people and a do a show like this -- our technology will allow him to do it."