Facebook, Meta’s flagship social media platform, has decided to pull down the shutters on its Facebook Gaming app. The social networking site informed in a notice sent to users that the app would cease to be available on both iOS and Android from October 28, 2022.
Additionally, they will no longer be available on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store from that date. “We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to all of you for everything that you’ve done to build a thriving community for gamers and fans since this app first launched. This was truly a community-led effort to bring new gaming features to Facebook,” the notice read.
“Despite this news, our mission to connect players, fans and creators with the games they love hasn’t changed, and you’ll still be able to find your games, streamers and groups when you visit Gaming in the Facebook app,” it added.
Users can download their search data before the app is discontinued.
This development marks the end of just over two years of the Facebook Gaming app, which made its debut amidst the pandemic when people took to gaming as a hobby, a way of passing the time, and as a way of entertainment. The app lets users play games, watch their favourite streamers play, and even take part in gaming groups.
This gaming platform has been Facebook’s attempt to have a strong presence in the live game streaming market and successfully leverage its considerable user base – steps taken to make it successful include exclusivity deals with creators and prominent personalities such as Neymar Jr., the Brazilian footballer, as well as a creator platform and the ability to co-stream.
It rose in popularity during the pandemic as it accompanied the simultaneous growth and “levelling up” of the gaming industry, but since then, its popularity has started to wane as it has struggled to emerge as a strong competitor to Twitch.
According to a report by StreamLabs, Facebook Gaming had a market share of 7.9% for hours watched in the second quarter of the year – which takes the count to 580 million (the least among Facebook Gaming, Twitch, and YouTube Gaming). 76.7% of hours watched went to Twitch, which continued its dominance in the market, while YouTube Gaming Live accounted for 15.4%.
It fared little better in the first quarter of the year as well, although the number of hours watched had climbed to 803 million in Q1 2022.