13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (2022)

Social media streaming software like Facebook Live and Instagram Live provide a ready-to-use live streaming solution. Unfortunately, though, their features are often limited and may be frustrating to work with, especially for budding content creators looking to improve their content’s reach.

Whatever your streaming goals, we have some top software options for you. Here’s our rundown of the best streaming software available in 2022.

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Table of Contents hide

1. LiveReacting

2. Streamlabs OBS [Best for professional streamers]

3. Flutin [Best for multichannel and monetization]

4. OneStream [Best overall streaming software]

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5. vMix [For Windows users]

6. Lightstream [Cloud-based streaming]

7. XSplit Broadcaster [Best for gamers]

9. Livestorm [Best for entrepreneurs]

10. Wirecast [Comprehensive streaming features]

11. Videolinq [Best integrated]

12. Streamyard [Simple web-based live streaming]

13. Vimeo best [For filmmakers and creators]

13 best streaming software options

1. LiveReacting

LiveReacting is a cloud-based software that's suitable for both new live streamers and professional streamers. With LiveReacting, you'll have access to customizable and interactive templates - the platform offers a range of interactive elements, including a trivia gameword search game, wordle, live polling, live countdown, and more. All these elements are automatic, so when you add any of them to your stream, all results are calculated automatically. Interactive elements are a great tool to engage live viewers and get more followers. Live stream viewers interact with streams via comments or reactions (react with an emoji to vote in a poll; comment to answer Trivia Game questions).Pros:
  • Advanced customization: drag, drop and resize media elements like images, and videos, invite guests into your live stream within one click, with the possibility to edit the stream 'on the go.'
  • Stream to multiple platforms from multiple cameras simultaneously.
  • Manage all users' comments from one place in the LiveReacting Studio
  • Set up as many scenes as you want and switch between them seamlessly
  • Inviting on-screen participants
Cons:
  • Recording, downloading and repurposing live streams.
  • Stream analytics is not available.
Price: The platform allows you to stream all interactive elements on a Free Trial (3 streams per month). You can upgrade to a paid plan if you need a more extensive range of features. For instance, the Medium plan for $39.99 offers 15 credits per month (1 credit - 4 hours stream). It allows streaming to 5 designations simultaneously, enabling 1080p streaming, screen sharing, plugin mode for integration into any other streaming software, and more.

2. Streamlabs OBS [Best for professional streamers]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (5)

Once you’ve got the hang of OBS Studio, you may want to level up to more advanced software that offers more features.

Streamlabs OBS is kind of like OBS’s elder brother––it’s from the same family, but more mature and with more features.

It has the same features as OBS Studio along with tons of other features that are harder to find elsewhere. With Streamlabs OBS, you’ll have access to alerts, customizable overlays, built-in-text-to-speech, and widgets like a viewer counter and chat box.

Its widgets like tip jars and sponsor banners make Streamlabs the go-to streaming software for content creators earning money from a YouTube channel or Facebook Live.

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Pros:

  • Customize your streams using free themes with static or animated overlays
  • Drag-and-drop elements with the intuitive layout editor to create a personal streaming software UI
  • Livestream directly from your mobile device with the Streamlabs mobile app
  • Quickly backup your recordings with the software’s in-built cloud backup

Limitations:

  • No sound commands with the integrated chatbot—users will need to run the chatbot separately for sound commands
  • Custom themes, widgets, and other features require more resources from your device

Price: Free. To access features like custom tip pages and paid sponsorships, you’ll need to pay for a Prime subscription. However, the price isn’t listed on their site.

3. Flutin [Best for multichannel and monetization]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (6)

Flutin is an online live streaming software that helps you multistream your real-time and pre-recorded video live streams to multiple streaming destinations like Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, Linkedin, and 20+ much more.

Flutin offers ultimate streaming features like Instagram streaming, Pre-recorded streaming, Sub-accounts, Zapier Integration, Guest Invite, and much more that will help you create professional and engaging live streaming. You can also monetize your live stream and create ticketed events.

Pros

  • Support Instagram Live directly from the studio
  • Add multiple sub-accounts under your main account
  • Wide range of streaming features like custom branding, live captions, comment highlighting, custom backgrounds and overlay
  • Allows pre-recorded streaming and you can also combine multiple videos into a single live session

Limitations

  • There is no slideshow feature available currently
  • Doesn’t offer a detailed analytics dashboard

Price: The Free plan enables 10 hours of streaming per month with limited channels and features. The paid plans start at $15 billed monthly or $150 billed annually.

4. OneStream [Best overall streaming software]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (7)

OneStream enables users to stream and record both live and pre-recorded videos to up to 40 platforms simultaneously.

With live streaming, you can also combine OneStream with other streaming tools, and begin multicasting. For instance, you could set up external streaming software like Zoom, Wirecast, or OBS and start sending your video stream directly to OneStream.

Pros:

  • Schedule live streams up to 60 days in advance
  • Choose multiple file upload options—via files, camera, and screen shares, for example
  • Enable multiple team members access to one account

Limitations:

  • Complex configurations and advanced features can make the streaming platform challenging for some users
  • There’s a 5GB limit when uploading videos from your own device.

Price: The Free plan enables unlimited live streaming, one social account, and one queued stream at a time. The Professional plan is $89/month and allows up to 50 social accounts, and 360-degree videos.

5. vMix [For Windows users]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (8)

vMix comes with solid features like OBS Studios but doesn’t come with the high price tag of solutions like Wirecast.

Its guest features make it easy to use for podcasts and guest interviews. All you need to do is send guests a link, and when they click on it they’re pulled onto your screen.

The best part is that featuring guests won’t compromise your audio or video quality, unlike with other software programs.

Pros:

  • Cool graphics features, including a professional set of 100+ animated titles, scoreboards, and tickers make for sleek video streams
  • Multi-bitrate streaming for professional streamers who prioritize user experience
  • Built-in titling tool automatically includes subtitles in your video streams

Limitations:

  • Only available for Windows, but can be used on Mac if installed via Boot Camp
  • Streams in low bitrate, which could be frustrating for users looking for top-quality video streams

Price: The Basic HD plan starts at $60/month and supports 4 inputs up to 3 camera/NDI and video up to Full HD 1920×1080 resolution. Plans steadily increase, with the Pro plan at $1200/month supporting 1,000 inputs.

6. Lightstream [Cloud-based streaming]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (9)

As a cloud-based streaming software, it’s easy to get started with Lightstream. All you need to do to access Lightstream is open your browser.

With a drag-and-drop editor featuring creative controls, projects, and scenes, Lightstream is intuitive to use.

Extensive third-party integrations for motion graphics, social media displays, and on-stream alerts help streamers boost audience engagement.

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Pros:

  • Use your smartphone to stop and start your live stream—and even switch scenes—remotely
  • All you need is an internet connection and a computer, no download necessary
  • Easily invite guests remotely by sharing a link and opt to privately chat with guests if needed

Limitations:

  • Users need a 5MB upload speed (which is pretty fast) to stream video content
  • No templates or backgrounds available

Price: The Creator plan is $20/month and includes up to seven remote guests, and up to four RTMP (Real-Time Messaging Protocol) sources.

7. XSplit Broadcaster [Best for gamers]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (10)

XSplit Broadcaster works for both live streaming and recording. It’s built with professional content creators in mind who stream niche content like gaming.

You won’t be short of platform streaming options either. Native plugins enable streaming to popular platforms like YouTube and Facebook, while Custom RTMP allows users to stream to any platform.

Pros:

  • Add event lists, subscriber goals, tip cups, and follower alerts using the customizable editor
  • Scene Preview Editor allows you to edit video scenes before live streaming them
  • See the number of new followers, subscribers, cheers, and super chats using the live status display

Limitations:

  • You may have to watch an ad before accessing some gated features
  • Currently only available for Windows, but will also be available for Mac soon

Price: Pricing plans are organized according to the length of the license. A one-month license is $15, while a lifetime license is $200.

8. Restream [Best for engaging audiences]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (11)

Sometimes when you focus on live streaming to just one platform, the number of viewers can be lower than you’d hoped.

Restream’s performance insights can help you track audience stats along with video stream metrics.

If you’re just starting out, it can be hard to predict on which platform your content will perform the best. So why not stream to multiple platforms at once? Restream helps you do this.

Pros:

  • Stream to 30+ global platforms simultaneously, including Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, Periscope, and Twitter
  • Stream pre-recorded videos live and get insights into your live streams
  • Enable audience interaction by inviting guests to your live stream and hosting interviews or Q&A sessions

Limitations:

  • Even with paid plans, Restream logos are added to streams
  • Free version has heavy limitsyou can’t even live stream to a Facebook page

Price: The Standard plan is $16/month while the Professional plan is $41/month.

9. Livestorm [Best for entrepreneurs]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (12)

If you’re a solopreneur or startup founder looking to hold live product demos, tutorials, or Q&A sessions, Livestorm could be the best streaming software for you.

Its interactive features, integrations, and ability to create user-friendly landing pages make it a favorite with entrepreneurs interacting with customers.

As cloud-based software, all attendees need to do is click the webinar link and they’ll automatically join the session. This ease of joining webinars will increase attendance rates too.

Pros:

  • Integrate Livestorm with over 1000+ applications like Slack and Salesforce using the Zapier integration tool
  • Get insightful data—number of attendees, email sign-ups, etc.—about your live streams with the analytics dashboard
  • Interact with your audience using the chat tool and use the Q&A tab to answer audience questions

Limitations:

  • Recorded webinar videos appear to be lower quality than live streams
  • No slideshow upload option, which may be annoying if you’re doing a product demo or how-to tutorial

Price: The Free plan enables users to hold unlimited webinars of up to 20 minutes per session, with a limit of 10 attendees. The Premium plan is $109/month and allows up to 100 attendees per session, with a session limit of 4 hours.

10. Wirecast [Comprehensive streaming features]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (13)

Created by Telestream, Wirecast enables users to create TV-quality live stream productions and on-demand broadcasts.

Wirecast enables you to capture, produce and stream—all from one customizable user interface.

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The software allows live streaming to any RTMP destination, giving users maximum flexibility regarding their choice of streaming platforms.

Pros:

  • Free access to a stock library with more than 500,000 media assets like videos, lower thirds, and music backgrounds
  • High-res ISO recording
  • Use clocks, scoreboards, replay, and timers while streaming live sports events

Limitations:

  • Requires at least 4 GB of RAM and 2 GB of free disk space
  • The software starts at $599, which is more expensive than its alternatives.

Price: Lifetime access to Wirecast Studio allows unlimited inputs and two remote guests. The plan costs $599 and includes a year’s subscription to the Insider Access Plan (normally $99), enabling free software upgrades and email support. Wirecast Pro is $799, includes all the Studio plan features, and allows seven remote guests.

11. Videolinq [Best integrated]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (14)

Videolinq is an alternative streaming software option for streaming to multiple social channels simultaneously.

The software makes it easy to start a stream from a webcam, source URL, or RTMP encoder.

Videolinq also integrates with streaming software like Teradek, Telestream, and AJA Video Systems.

Pros:

  • 1CapApp technology integration to generate real-time closed captioning on your live videos
  • Monetize your content with third-party platforms like Google Ad Manager
  • Works with all browsers, operating systems, and mobile devices

Limitations:

  • Limited livestream options, unlike other platforms like Restream
  • Multiple logins for different team members are only provided with higher end Premium and Enterprise plans

Price: A Basic plan is $49/month with a top-tier Enterprise plan costing $499/month. Or you can get the annual deal for $210 on AppSumo.

12. Streamyard [Simple web-based live streaming]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (15)

Streamyard is best for users who want to simply log in and start streaming immediately. Streamyard operates out of web browsers Chrome and Firefox, so there’s no need for a bulky download.

There’s no need for a laptop either––stream out of any device, tablet, phone, or desktop, so long as you can access Chrome.

Pros:

  • Stream directly to social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube
  • Add CTAs to your live streams, and they will pop up alongside your live stream
  • Add an interactive logo or name to enhance your brand presence in your streams

Limitations:

  • No integrations, which will feel like a loss especially for advanced streamers
  • No analytics or reports to evaluate how videos are performing with your audience from within the platform

Price: Free. Upgrade to a Basic plan at $20/month and eliminate Streamyard branding from your videos.

13. Vimeo best [For filmmakers and creators]

13 Best Streaming Software (Free and Paid) in 2022 (16)

Vimeo was launched in 2004 by a group of filmmakers, as a way of easily sharing bulky videos with friends.

It quickly grew in popularity as a video on demand platform for creators, filmmakers, and designers. As live streaming becomes more mainstream, Vimeo has launched features enabling high-quality live broadcasting with videos auto-archived in up to 4K.

Pros:

  • Better understand your audience with metrics like where people are watching and on what devices
  • Customize both your broadcasting experience and video player on the backend
  • Automatically stream your videos in HD

Limitations:

  • Live streaming capabilities are only available on Vimeo’s Premium plan at $75/month
  • Video monetization costs begin at $1/subscriber which may be prohibitive to large-scale broadcasters looking to stream to hundreds of thousands of subscribers

Price: To access live streaming features, users must subscribe to the Premium plan at $75/month.

Which streaming software is best for you?

As with most software decisions, the right option for you depends on your budget, operating system, and which features are most important.

While you build your video streaming strategy, think about where you’re most likely to be streaming, which integrations are most helpful, and how much time you have to dedicate to learning each platform.

Don’t forget to check out the AppSumo store for all the latest software deals too.

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FAQs

What software do I need for live streaming? ›

Let's get to it.
  • Wirecast. With unlimited inputs, unlimited destinations, and simultaneous video conferencing, Wirecast studio is the perfect live streaming software. ...
  • vMix. ...
  • VidBlasterX. ...
  • OBS Studio. ...
  • Streamlabs OBS. ...
  • FFmpeg. ...
  • XSplit Broadcaster.
14 Sept 2022

What is the number 1 live streaming platform? ›

1. Twitch: It is a popular live streaming platform as well as an on-demand video platform that assists users to watch anything they like directly from their console and PC. It provides access to all-powerful platforms for the fastest live streaming.

How can I stream for free? ›

The best free streaming services include Amazon Freevee, Crackle, Hoopla, and several more, all listed below. These free services are available through most streaming devices and smart TVs, as well as on laptops, smartphones, and tablets—just like Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services you have to pay for.

What browser do streamers use? ›

Microsoft Edge is now one of the most famous names in the industry. Compared to its predecessor (i.e., Internet Explorer) Microsoft Edge is faster, more secure, and has a better user interface. It is marked as the browser for business by Microsoft, but it can do other stuff like streaming equally well.

How can I live stream like a pro? ›

8 Tips to live stream like a pro
  1. Invest in quality video tools to stream. ...
  2. Practice before going live. ...
  3. Look at the camera to connect with viewers. ...
  4. Invite a guest or find a co-host. ...
  5. Check in with audio quality high. ...
  6. Promote your live stream time and place on social media. ...
  7. Don't stress about perfectionism.
28 Jun 2021

What does a beginner streamer need? ›

As a beginner, you need four things to go live: a camera, a microphone, streaming software, and a good internet connection. You can also add accessories that will drastically improve the quality of your live stream without too much effort.

What do Youtubers use for streaming? ›

Best Streaming Software for 2022 (Twitch and Youtube):
  • OWN3D Pro.
  • OBS Studio.
  • Streamlabs OBS.
  • LightStream.
  • vMix.
  • XSplit Broadcaster.
  • Gamecaster.
  • Nvidia ShadowPlay.
20 Jun 2022

How much RAM do I need for OBS? ›

OBS Studio System Requirements

AMD FX series or Intel i5 2000-series processor (dual or 4-core preferable) or higher. DirectX 10 capable graphics card. At least 4 GB of RAM (recommended, but not necessary)

How do I record my screen in high quality? ›

Top 10 Screen Recorder Tools for 2021
  1. OBS Studio. OBS or Open Broadcaster Software is a free screen video recorder that offers both recording and streaming in high definition, with no limits on the length of your videos. ...
  2. Apowersoft Unlimited. ...
  3. Screencast-O-Matic. ...
  4. AceThinker. ...
  5. ScreenFlow. ...
  6. Screencastify. ...
  7. Bandicam. ...
  8. Filmora Scrn.
2 May 2022

Which streaming service has the most free movies? ›

Tubi. Tubi boasts the largest content library of all the free streaming sites, with more than 40,000 titles to choose from. This includes hundreds of kids' shows like Barney and Yo Gabba Gabba, cartoon shows like Pokémon The Series and The Flintstones, plus films like The Matrix, The Sandlot and Hulk.

What is better then Netflix? ›

Hulu is the go-to alternative for many previous (and some current) Netflix users. It offers a huge selection of TV and movies, as well as award-winning original content. Its ad-supported option is cheaper than even Netflix's Basic plan.

What is largest video streaming platform? ›

Netflix. Netflix is the largest paid-for video streaming service in the world, with 195 million subscribers and a $17 billion annual content spend. https://www.businessofapps.com/data/amazon-statistics/ Amazon Prime Video.

What do most streamers use to stream? ›

Streamlabs OBS is the most commonly used software for streaming on Twitch. It's available for free and is super simple to use. Because it is so simple to use, it is the software that new streamers are recommended to use. This software supports Windows and Mac.

Is Streamlabs or OBS better? ›

While Streamlabs is based on OBS and outperforms it in some aspects, Streamlabs is also more resource-intensive than OBS. With the right software, you should be able to record your screen, make basic edits to your videos, capture webcam footage, and broadcast livestreams – all without using a separate platform.

How do I live stream on a low end PC? ›

If you own a low-end PC, there are still many options when it comes to streaming software for low-end PC.
...
Best Streaming Software for Low-End PC – Top 8 Picks in 2022
  1. OneStream Live.
  2. OBS.
  3. SLOBS.
  4. XSplit.
  5. Wirecast.
  6. Lightstream Mixer.
  7. 1AVStreamer.
  8. Bandicam.
22 Sept 2022

Which is better OBS or Twitch studio? ›

If you only want to stream on Twitch, go with Twitch Studio. If you're going to stream on other platforms or like to have an option, you should consider OBS with a plugin. OBS is questioning to use to stream, but if you use Streamlabs or StreamElements (both use OBS) to stream your actions on multiple platforms.

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