Today live video streaming service Ustream launches a series of new features with the intent of making it easier for users to monetize their platform.
The sexiest new features is a service called Open Pay Per View which allows any Ustream broadcaster to apply for their own pay per view program, charging users to view content through Pay Pal. Like on Stickcam, with Ustream Open Pay Per View any Ustream user can apply directly to Ustream to create their own Pay Per View Service, allowing users like Robert Scoble or TechCrunch to earn some cash whenever they have a high profile guest, livestream a conference or hold any other event where they might draw more eyeballs.
Ustream refers to this feature as “the democratizing of content” and it is in fact interesting as many livestream services are working on perfecting Pay Per View and there are reports that YouTube might be working on it. While Ustream Pay Per View is currently available to select users; People who are interested can start the application process here.
In launching its second feature, Ad Free Broadcasting, Ustream also joins Justin.tv and Livestream in allowing broadcasters to cut out ads entirely from their service. Users can pay for this directly through an online payments process, and eliminate Ustream’s in stream ads entirely. Ad free broadcasting will be rolled out to all users in November.
Ustream has $87.8 million in funding lead by Softbank. The service currently has over 45 million monthly unique visits with an average of 20 to 30 minute viewing time and was most recently in the news for breaking viewing records during the Chilean miner rescue.