For hundreds of years, Sunday mornings have been synonymous with church gatherings for many families across the world. Churches have drawn believers in their vicinity into a central commune to share stories and wisdom and faith. As the world shrinks however, cross-border pollination and exchanges are becoming more and more common, pulling people away from their home ground for months or even years at a time. The threads that bind families and congregations however remain tight across many church fraternities, thanks to the merits of technology. One turnkey framework in particular has gained relevance for many churches. StreamNow, a turnkey, lightweight technology has led many church communities to broadcast live streaming services to viewers in various corners of the globe. Distances have shrunk and faith is being carried across the internet in the most amazing ways.
Merits of Live Streaming Services
Church services can cement communities together, but more often, the most inclined are unable to visit and participate in sermons in person. The elderly, mothers with young babies, the ill and indisposed, and those living in other cities make up just part of this subset. By introducing live streaming services, you can open the doors of your church to those who would like to watch at home. Live streams can be converted to recorded content that you can save in a permanent library for future reference.
If you’ve been scouring the internet for effective church live streaming solutions to host your church service, here are seven options you can choose from.
Option 1. StreamNow
StreamNow is a cutting-edge technology that combines aesthetics and functionality to give you a fluid, interactive interface. The framework works seamlessly across devices and pairs with state-of-the-art cameras and hardware. With a host of personalisation features, you can tailor your interface to align with your brand’s outlook. StreamNow also comes with an archived content store called StreamView, which can serve as a perfect repository for all your content.
StreamNow allows users to live stream in a variety of formats. For instance, an event that is privately live streamed is broadcast only to select users, specifically those following the broadcaster. A public event on the other hand, is notified to all users. Further, StreamNow is stocked with user discretion features. Users have the option of accepting or rejecting an event. If they choose to accept, another notification will be sent to them at the time of the event. The framework also offers a real-time commenting feature and doubles up as a social media platform, with users able to follow and unfollow each other at will, and share statuses. StreamNow is equipped with excellent monetisation features, with administrators free to design their own dynamic subscription plan. This means that you can create differentiated premium content, charging users a fee to unlock content. Banner advertisements are a brilliant monetisation technique that come inbuilt with StreamNow. StreamNow comes with a technology stack that matches up to some of the best live streaming frameworks in the world. Crafted with layers such as WebRTC, Node.js, Laravel 5.2, Bootstrap and Wowza, StreamNow houses superlative software rings in its technology stack.
Option 2. Streamingchurch.tv
Streamingchurch.tv is a tailor-made platform for church live streaming services. It comes with a range of features that make it ideal for sharing your stream across social networks. Streamingchurch.tv is a church-centric platform that offers exclusive features like sermon notes and virtual visitor maps. Sermon notes provide notes to those watching remotely, so that they can follow the flow of a service without any problem.
Streamingchurch.tv is armed with a double-barreled carriage of features that span live streaming and video on demand. The platform can be embedded onto your own website and streams can be shared fluidly across devices, both mobile and desktop. The service also features a map of virtual visitors who are attending a service. Moreover, Streamingchurch.tv can be plugged into social media websites like Facebook and Twitter.
Option 3. Sunday Streams
Sunday Streams is a service meant exclusively for church streaming services. It comes in two differentiated price plans, each one with its own set of offerings. The plans vary in terms of maximum upload limit, advertisement displays, domain allotment, mobile compatibility and Roku customisation, amongst other attributes.
Sunday Streams is a simple, effective platform that is easy to install and use. This makes it especially useful for newbies who are still learning the ropes of live streaming. Sunday Streams does not rely on a content delivery network, raising the risk of compromised content quality. The service offers excellent customer support, and is known for its 24-hour response policy.
Option 4. ChristianWorldMedia
ChristianWorldMedia is ideal for church streaming services. It comes in three differentiated price plans, each one with its own set of benefits and features. The plans stand apart from each other in terms of storage space, online bible integration and Roku channel configuration, amongst other features.
ChristianWorldMedia offers rungs of pricing that sit in the budgets of churches big and small. The platform is flexible, fluid and customisable. Plus, because its pricing model starts from the very bottom, more churches are encouraged to pick live streaming as a means of communication. ChristianWorldMedia offers a content delivery network with all its packages.
Option 5. TruthCasting
TruthCasting offers a flexi-price model that pivots on the number of members in your church. Alternatively, the number of visitors that attend Sunday mass is used as a yardstick. Interestingly, the features offered in every tier of the TruthCasting pricing model are the same; only the fees differ according to the number of on-site members. The platform is hosted on Amazon Web Server.
TruthCasting offers an ad-free experience to viewers while providing unlimited storage to broadcasters. The service also provisions for code sharing for website integration and is device-agnostic.
Option 6. MyChurchWebsite.com
MyChurchWebsite.com was originally established as a boutique website development company. Over the years, it has evolved its offerings and has now come to provide church live streaming services. The brand offers a vanilla price point of $49, which contains 250 GB of storage space and an ad-free interface. The platform is not underpinned by a content delivery network, making it susceptible to quality issues.
The service provides 250 GB of bandwidth, mobile compatibility, an ad-free interface and social media plugins.
Option 7. Livestream
Livestream is a bigwig in the live streaming services space and this is reflected in its cost structure. Contrary to perception, Livestream does not offer the best features for its price. Live embedding for instance, isn’t supported on its basic plan, meaning that you cannot host your live stream on your own website. For this, you’d have to upgrade to a more expensive plan. Small churches couldn’t possibly afford this price tag, making it an automatic no-no. Livestream does offer an on-demand facility that lets you archive your live content. It also works on a content delivery network, keeping your stream functioning at its best, even with a large number of viewers.
Livestream offers four tiers of pricing ranging from $42 all the way up to $1199 per month. Features included in the more high-end plans include cloud input, lead capture, live embedding, tracking and analytics, telephone customer support, white labelling and password protected events.
Before picking a live streaming framework, consider the needs of your church, its propensity to spend and its community spread. Every church has a unique need; it’s up to you to decide which live streaming route to take.