Periscope, a mobile app owned and developed by Twitter, Inc. launched on Thursday 03/26. For many, it was interpreted as its Meerkat rival which went live at this year’s SXSW event. The conference of all things tech, marketing, and tech where startups aim to be discovered. According to online sources, by Friday evening Periscope had entered the top 30 most downloaded apps at the iOS App Store. Something Meerkat unfortunately was unable to near. With two app solutions in the marketplace going head-to-head, which offers the best functionality and interaction?

Let’s take a closer look at both apps by understanding a little about their background, origination, and current standing.

Periscope vs Meerkat

Meerkat’s Outburst

An explosion out of left field that officially made its mark at SXSW 2015. The app made it into the iOS app store by around February 27, 2015 but it wasn’t until the SXSW conference when the official announcement was made. Naturally like everything new the early adopters flocked in with their Twitter handles. Naturally anything that is brand-spanking new is always a delight. full of excitement and exploration. Users storm in like a bunch of youngsters on Christmas Day anxious to rip the packaging off their gifts. Yes, I was one of those folks outrageously thrilled about this new app called Meerkat. I started to tinker around with it and quickly became labeled as another Meerkater.

The app was gaining momentum. Some rumors were floating around the web about some 300,000+ users having joined the app and started using it. Meerkat struggled with bandwith upkeep and the ability to provide a succinct video experience. Rumors, in all honesty. Nonetheless, this app seemed to be the hottest thing since sliced bread in the world of social media and live video streaming. Only until Twitter gave Meerkat a 2 hour notice before cutting them off from the social graph and later on we will circle back to this point to clarify the why.

Ok, so let’s take a holistic look at Meerkat and evaluate its stealth over the last couple of months including its features.

  • Official introduction during SXSW 2015.
  • Spawned to some 300,000+ users and individuals/brands like Jimmy Fallon, Shaq, Mashable, Gary Vaynerchuck, Guy Kawasaki, Jared Leto, and many others stormed in.
  • Launched with an iOS app version for iPhone and limited Android release.
  • Integrates with Twitter Oauth authorization.
  • Ability to post-date future streams for later casting.
  • Available desktop viewing capabilities.
  • Operates over LTE with low to high signal availability.
  • Secured over $14 million in funding on March 27, 2015 while being only a month out into the stratosphere.

Twitter’s ‘Periscope’ App

It is quite interesting to see an app of identical functionality launch on the very same day when Meerkat secured over $14 million dollars in funding. Coincidence maybe? Extremely doubtful. Speculations indicate that Meerkat may have had specific intent on cashing in so quickly. But, let’s take a closer look at Twitter’s Periscope app before getting too far ahead of ourselves. Launched on March 27, 2015 and created plenty of controversy around the web. As it stands, the app seems to be surpassing its rival by a landslide. One of the monumental achievements about this app though is the fact that by the evening of Friday, March 28, 2015 it reached Top 30 chart of most downloaded iOS apps. Simultaneously, its rival took a massive downfall back to No. 523.

According to top analysts, if an app does not rank in the top 500 spots out of the gate then chances are its existence does not carry much longevity. Let’s hope that isn’t the case for Meerkat though. Ok, so let’s take a closer look at Periscope and see how it stacks up against its rival.

  • Hits the streets officially as of March 27, 2015.
  • As of March 28, 2015 it ranks in the Top 30 most downloaded iOS apps.
  • Offers intuitive video streaming options including zoom in/out feature during broadcasting.
  • Seamless integration with the Twitter social graph. The upside of being a brainchild project.
  • Fluent social friendliness for the native app with a succinct conversational elements.
  • Desktop viewing capabilities with limited interaction.

Thus far Periscope is gaining exponential growth while its rival continues to slowly sink in the rankings. Perhaps a little too soon to make any predictions on the future of Meerkat. Admittedly though, Periscope seems to be all-around far more interactive than its rival. Including the social integration component that allows for more engaging conversations.