The surge of Arabic-based streams has doubled during March and April.
When countries went into lockdown, many resorted to doing activities indoors. For streaming service Twitch, it saw a massive bump in users hailing from the Middle East – a figure that saw the amount of Arabic content double during March and April when much of the region is in lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Twitch, popularly known as a service where you can stream and watch live gameplay, said that 62,582 active streams were recorded as more people are staying home. Additionally, Twitch streams in Arabic have increased by over 95.3 percent year-on-year and 36.9 percent when compared to the previous month. In April alone, the yearly increase was recorded at 101.9 percent. Many of the streams hail from gamers in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Bahrain.
Some of the top Twitch channels that recorded a high percentage of viewership include ixxYjYxxi from Saudi Arabia, who recorded more than 210,157 views during 44 hours streaming during the month. Another streamer, RakanooLive has more than 561,000 hours of watch time.
YouTube, which is also a platform for gamers to stream their gameplay, showed an increase in viewership that started with 1,000,000 hours watched in February and jumping to 3,000,000 in March. A reason for this huge jump is one streamer from Bahrain that has recorded 911,000 hours of viewership by simply playing Minecraft.
A report also revealed that the MENA region has the world’s most active gaming community with a 25 percent year-on-year growth. This makes it the fastest growing online gaming population in the world. It also said that as the region’s gaming content is booming, it is seeing a market that’s worth $6 billion by 2021.
Highlighted were games like Fortnite and PUBG, which are among the top games being played in the region.