Meerkats on the African savannah are known for their upright postures to scan the horizon for eagles and other birds of prey. In a way, Meerkat the app is looking for something as well, though in this case, it’s on the lookout for an ally instead of a predator.
The app could use a friend. Though it was the first one off the lifestreaming-as-app block, Periscope came on the scene a little while after it. Periscope had one very big advantage — a sugardaddy in the name of Twitter. It cut Meerkat off from its social graph and Periscope sucked the air out of the room.
Meerkat announced a pivot that may keep it in the streaming game. The app is now integrating itself into Facebook to allow users to push their livestreams through the social networking site. Popular Meerkat activity will make its way to Facebook feeds, a function known as “mobbing”. Meerkat is also upping its own social networking game by connecting users through their contacts (an optional service).
Facebook has about 1.28 billion users. Twitter has about 500 million. Both numbers are nothing to sneeze at, but Meerkat throwing its lot with Facebook may lead to to more users than tying themselves just to Twitter. Though it still uses Twitter to login into its service, Meerkat’s embrace of Zuckerberg and company is a smart play.