The 27-year-old former architecture student from Israel took the stage Sunday afternoon at South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, Tex. to promote Meerkat, the live-streaming app developed by his company Air. Rubin shouldn’t have: three days into the conference’s Interactive portion, Meerkat is already the conference’s “breakout app.”
During the talk, Rubin disclosed solid figures about engagement. Meerkat easily crossed 100,000 users over the weekend, following a brouhaha with Twitter where the social network cut off the app’s access to its social graph.
Twenty percent of Meerkat users watch over 2 hours of live video daily; eight percent catch a whopping three or more hours a day. If that’s right, a serious chunk of Meerkat users spend more time on Rubin’s app on any given day than the average Facebook user spent checking their News Feed throughout 2014.
Rubin also tossed off high-profile examples of so-called “Meerkaters.” Red Bull drew 700 viewers when it broadcast an ice skating competition, and a Miami Dolphins game caught the eye of another 1,100 users. And that’s not including early supporters such as skateboarder Tony Hawk and actor-turned-startup investor Ashton Kutcher.
Obviously, Facebook has been around a lot longer, and Meerkat’s user base is a sliver of the social network’s 1.4 billion-plus. The app also has to prove that it has more longevity than SXSW darlings like Highlight, the location-based app that took off in 2012, then fizzled after.
All we can say is, good luck with that.
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