If you choose to air a live stream of your wedding for guests who can’t be in attendance you have several options for doing so. One of the most popular options that most couples use is Skype. The program can be downloaded to an Internet connected computer. Hooking up a webcam to the computer allows you to use Skype to stream your wedding in real time. Depending on the package you have, using this service allows you to stream your wedding to one computer only or to as many as 10 computers at once.
Another option for live streaming your wedding is to use Apple’s FaceTime app. Compatible with iPhones and iPads as well as MacBooks, FaceTime limits the broadcast of your wedding to a single computer. You would need to gather all your invited guests that can’t attend into the same room so that they could view the wedding on a computer screen. Though you don’t have the option on a MacBook, if you are using an iPhone or iPod you can alternate between showing the view from the cameras back lens and front lens.
The option that gives you the most freedom to live stream your wedding is UStream. It is compatible with not only Apple devices but Android devices too. Being able to use your smartphone or computer gives you more flexibility in broadcasting your wedding. You also have the option of broadcasting it live in real time only or recording it in addition to broadcasting it; meaning the broadcast could be watched an endless amount of times by anyone. Another benefit to using UStream is that the people watching your broadcast will be able to chat with each other in real time during the broadcast. With the right package you can even assign a password to your live wedding broadcast so that it is only seen by the people you choose.
Though it offers fewer features, Livestream is also a popular choice among couples. With the free plan you can show a live stream of your wedding, but you must upgrade to a paid plan if you want to limit who can see it. Even the free version of the app records your wedding for you. The wedding is then saved to an online server and you have 30 days to watch it before it leaves the server. Their video processing is also one of the best out there which is ideal if you plan to something unusual like using sparklers at your wedding ceremony or having a strobe light and laser light show going on in the background.
While these options somewhat limit who can see the live stream of your wedding, when you want to stream it to a large group of people you’ll want to use YouTube Live or Google Hangouts. There is not extra fees involved with using Google Hangouts because it does everything you could ever want it to do; for free. Up to nine people can watch the live stream in a single Google Hangout, and for everyone else, the live stream also appears on YouTube. This option means that you will automatically have the live stream of your wedding saved to your YouTube account for posterity.