Learn What are the Best Practices for Live Streaming?

Learn What are the Best Practices for Live Streaming?

Live streaming on the internet has changed the medium of entertainment from offline to online and made it easier for brands to bond with their target audience. According to leading influencer marketing agency Mediakix’s stats, Twitch has a massive streaming ecosystem drawing 9.7 min daily active users, speaking for the number of internet users interested in live streaming. Out of these, 100 million daily active users watched videos in Q4 2016. As the numbers keep increasing staggeringly, businesses are constantly strategizing to get improved results with live streaming.

Here are the best practices for live streaming:

Choose the Right Tool:

The best way to stream live videos of your business is ideally on your website. This will ensure that all the traffic is driven to your website alone and no other video sharing website earns a hefty sum of money out of all the hard work you do to telecast live videos. But if you are keen on using social media platforms at first before going big on your own live video streaming website, the most popular tools are Facebook Live, Twitter’s Periscope and Blab.

Facebook Live videos are watched 3x longer than regular videos. So if you are broadcasting your live streams on other platforms, broadcasting simultaneously to Facebook is a good idea. Once your stream on Facebook Live has ended, it will become a video on your page so your followers can watch it anytime. If you don’t stream to Facebook, you can still share the replay link or upload the file directly to Facebook.

Periscope is owned by Twitter and if your brand has engaged Twitter audience, this is a great option. You just have to post your Livestream to Twitter and your followers can watch it in the tweet. You can stream Q&A, show behind-the-scenes and have your audience participating via comments through the Periscope app. So you are engaging with your audience in more than one way at the same time.

Blab is a live streaming tool that can be used on smartphone and desktop. Blab is a great tool as it allows you to have four people live streaming at once. This again means you can engage in four ways with the same audience at the same time. You could run the broadcast in one, put up live questions from the audience in the second, live chat in the third, let an expert or audience member speak in the fourth. There are ‘n’ number of options that you could experiment within the four seats to make the most of the live streaming for your business. You could also share links, provide downloadable content, infographics as you speak about it in the stream, YouTube videos etc.

Bandwidth Recommendations:

Shared networks and wireless connections do not assure zero bandwidth fluctuation. So the most reliable internet connection when streaming is connecting directly via Ethernet to a dedicated network. When you are the sole user of an internet connection, fluctuations are very minimal. Rule of thumb is to have twice the upload speed to the bitrate intended to be streamed.

Backup Recording:

Recording back-up of an on-going live stream is helpful in the rare case where you run into bandwidth issues. For recording purpose, plan for file transport, whether you want to upload to a server or to a repository. The recording can also be broken down into different sections and hosted on your website.

Address your Audience’s Needs:

The best way to live stream video is to choose topics that will address your audience’s needs regarding your products, services or based on the industry you cater to. Live streaming enables you to deliver solutions and engage your viewers to be equal participants in the event. At the end of your live video, they should have answers to their questions or something that will benefit them. When your business validates and addresses present need, question or opportunity, the discussion is always fruitful. When subject matter experts from your business host live videos, viewer participation is higher during Q&A session. This makes your live streams successful.

Double Check on Timing:

Check if your live streaming time would be convenient for the time zone of your target audience. When you are targeting audience globally, it is important to make sure your broadcast is not much of a trouble fitting into their time schedule. Make necessary changes in the timings that will suit everyone. After all, the whole point of streaming live is that target audience can participate.

Promote your Scheduled Broadcast:

Your live stream will have an audience only when you have promoted it through different channels; people know about it and show interest in it. You could promote it on your website, blog and social media accounts. To make it more interesting, use image creating tools like PicMonkey or Canva to create impressive images giving details about your Livestream’s topic, date, time, platform and any other relevant details. Share these images on social media and other channels rather than putting down plain text. The human brain tends to remember images more than text. Also, it is easy for your followers to download the image to safe-keep the details of the live stream.

Include Call To Action:

Including relevant CTA after every live stream is as important as including a CTA. Your call-to-action could be as common as following you on social networking sites or subscribing to your newsletters, adding links to informational video or free download.

Create a Plan for Engagement

The best way to broadcast live video is to create a plan for engaging audience beforehand. First engagement point is to welcome viewers, ask where they’re tuning in from. Engaging people early on and addressing them by names during a conversation makes it more likely for them to engage later in the broadcast. When you find your audience enjoying the broadcast while you converse with them, you could also ask them to share the broadcast if they’re enjoying it.

Planning and preparation is the key for novice and expert alike. Users don’t always come forward with questions once the session is open. To keep your event interesting and engaging, you have to be prepared with additional information and backup plan. Being sufficiently informed help in being open to divert the discussion to another pressing topic that might be the need of the hour. You could also try to incorporate different ways to engage an audience that will influence and impact the broadcast. For instance, ask a question in the comments that will lead to the actual action onscreen.

Seize the Opportunity as it Comes

Pre-planned live streams are always good and welcome, but there are times when the first one to catch up on the flash news or an opportunity, can grow leaps and bounds. It is essential for businesses to be opportunistic in their live stream plans. Over planning or speculation misses out timely opportunities. Several live streaming software’s are available in the market that enables launching business venture almost instantly. The best live streaming software backs you with all the necessary technicalities, so you can invest your time in the creation of live streams.

Test and Learn Post Production

Once your broadcast has ended, it is a great idea to do a post-mortem. You could answer questions like, what could be done better or how to be more creative and engaging. Utilize the learning from previous broadcasts to improvise on the upcoming ones. Because there is always room for improvement, even for the biggest of brands who have been in the business for a long time.

Celebrate the Team Work

It takes a team of specialists to put together an event, regardless of the length of the broadcast. Celebrate the teamwork, even when the live stream falls flat because your team will be implementing the learning in the next one.

Put to use the best practices and experience incremental success in your live streaming.

 

3 Effective Steps to Monetise Your Video Streaming Business

3 Effective Steps to Monetise Your Video Streaming Business

So, the light bulb in your head has flicked on, compelling you to enter the online video realm. And you can’t wait to get started. The online video space is an endless landscape of interesting content, innovative people, and multiple formats. Whether you’ve chosen to go the live video route or the on-demand route, there is a selection of technology frameworks you can choose from to spark the beginning of your journey.

2017 has seen the rise of StreamHash, a company that specializes in creating avant-garde video frameworks for an assortment of streaming needs. With StreamTube for video sharing, StreamView for over-the-top services and StreamNow for live streaming, StreamHash has you covered all through. Once you’re done setting up your video service, your next step should ideally be to monetize your videos. In this guide, we walk you through some of the best practices in the industry and how they can help pave the way to your success.

Step 1. Pick a Monetization Route:

When it comes to picking a route to monetise video your videos, there are three time-tested options that are as effective as they are easy to implement. These can be executed either individually or together, depending on your need.

A. Advertising:

Advertising, done effectively, will rarely let you down. Having proved its effectiveness on a range of formats, including television, radio, and print, the digital realm has now embraced it wholeheartedly. Advertising is popular for several reasons. For one, it lets you root your marketing strategy in an enduring, sustainable monetization model. Advertisers are easily lured by a compelling audience, and as long as you can show them value, you’ll have enough reason to reign them in. Also, advertising lets you provide free content to users, meaning that customer registration will see greater traction than if your content were priced. The result? Better advertising opportunities.

Allow us to tell you how to monetize videos via advertising by digging deeper into the two main advertising models favored by broadcasters.

A.1. Digital Ad Platform:

A digital ad platform is possible through VAST, a term that stands for Video Ad-Serving Template. This service exhibits many of the same features as Google AdWords and is tailored to monetise video content. Its setup process is simple and straightforward.

A. 2. Direct Advertising:

Although a digital ad platform can be convenient, it will likely make you less money. Direct advertising is a ground-up effort, requiring you to build your service from scratch. Scouting for potential clients, closing deals and stitching ads onto your platform can be exhausting but can also yield you a better return as a result of precise targeting. It’s an effective way to monetize video content. You could also introduce the concept of banner ads, inviting advertisers to bid for prime advertising space on your website. Despite the advantages of direct advertising, the process can be expensive. Sourcing advertisers can entail a tremendous effort and a subpar turnout can press your bottom line.

B. Pay Per View:

If you monetize your videos via pay-per-view, or PPV as it is known, you can provide access to users to standalone programmes at a predetermined rate. This format has some merits. If your content is worthy, you can expect significant traffic on your website, accelerating your revenue stream. On the other hand, if you offer premium content, and cater to a small audience, your revenues could still be high. However, PPV doesn’t encourage customer stickiness. By serving your users on a per-piece basis, you may fail to build customer loyalty. PPV can also be costly to market.

C. Subscriptions:

Subscriptions can offer users a ticket to unlimited content on your website. Unlike a PPV model, a subscription service serves as a generous gesture to customers while also working as an effective tool to monetize video content. If you’re thinking Netflix, you’re absolutely right. If you monetize video content through subscriptions, you can encourage loyalty and stickiness while also enhancing user experience through continued usage. Subscription services also offer better analytics, allowing you to discover which types of content receive the best response from users. Like any model, subscriptions come with their share of demerits. A subscription service warrants a bank of amazingly curated content that users would be willing to pay for. Striking a balance between customer acquisition and retention is imperative.

Step 2. Pick a Video Streaming Platform

We’ve already mentioned how an effective video streaming platform can work wonders for your business. By picking a superior turnkey framework, you’re saved the trouble of piecing your streaming service together yourself. You don’t have to go through the rigmarole of hiring manpower, training your resources and investing energy and time into it in the process. Here’s where to look for the technology piece of your enterprise puzzle:

For Live Streaming:

Live streaming is becoming increasingly relevant today, with enterprises geared towards engaging with and reaching out to customers in real-time. StreamNow is an ideal technology fit for a business rooted in live streaming. Built to be a close-knit community, the platform allows you to craft your streaming service akin to a social media page, offering users the option to follow each other. The framework also allows users to share moments by way of a status bar. The key to monetise video content on StreamNow lies in its banner ads and dynamic subscription plan.

For Over-The-Top Content Streaming

If you see yourself building a content library based on a subscription model, turn to StreamView. An intricately modeled framework that offers fluidity across devices, StreamView makes content consumption easier and more enjoyable than conventional streaming formats. It is also armed with an arsenal of personalisation features, a handy control console and a range of user-friendly functions. There are various inbuilt features through which you can monetize your videos on StreamView.

For Shared Video Streaming:

StreamTube can help you create your own version of YouTube. Let’s say you’re looking to set up an exclusive cooking site that invites users to share recipes and tips. In this case, StreamTube would be perfect. The technology features channel management and a host of payment mediums. You can monetise video content with banner ads and a dynamic subscription plan mechanism.

Step 3. Market Your Product:

Building an incredible video service will not reap results unless you get your product into the market effectively. Here are some ways that you can get the word out there:

  • Email promotions
  • Regular social media updates
  • Frequent blog posts
  • Contributions on other blogs
  • Conventional advertising including television, print, and radio
  • Search engine advertising
  • Influencer sponsorships

There is no holy grail to monetise video content for any business. Consider your audience, your content and your reach. Monetize your videos a little at a time to see what works for you. In time, you’ll discover your path in the world of video sharing.

 

The Best Advice You will Hear About Video Hosting for Your Business

The Best Advice You will Hear About Video Hosting for Your Business

Producing original and quality videos are expensive and time-consuming. Without the right video hosting strategy, it is not possible to get optimal results for all the effort put in creation. YouTube and Vimeo are popular options to share your video for your business on the internet. Here is why you shouldn’t do it.

  • You may reach a large audience instantly, but they are not your target audience.
  • Your business doesn’t receive any benefit when viewers share or embed your video.
  • Ads can appear anytime within your video – before, during, after – always without your permission. Ads displayed could also be for your competition and you have no control to remove it.

Having your own video hosting site like YouTube gives you complete control over your business. When you use video hosting for business, you can integrate videos with your website. It is also true that you can integrate your videos hosted on YouTube with your website using an embed code, but there are three major disadvantages to it.

  • Backlink to YouTube

When you embed your YouTube video on your website, and a viewer clicks on that link to view it, it links back to the YouTube site. So the viewers on your website are funneled back to YouTube domain. This ultimately means that maximum revenue generation for them and undercutting for your business.

  • Missed or no conversion

When people watch your business videos on YouTube, they generate revenue for YouTube and not for your business. This also means missing out on lead generation, minimal or no conversion on a third-party video hosting site.

  • No call-to-action option

YouTube allows for video description only while uploading a video. The sidebar of your business video will have related content, mostly from your competitors. You wouldn’t want a viewer to keep jumping over to other brands after looking at your video. Do you? But when you embed a video from a host on your website, it allows for tighter integration. Each of your videos can have a call-to-action in line with your business’ goals. Also, having your own video hosting server will ensure secure video hosting for your business.

Major benefits of a dedicated streaming video hosting service are:

Speed – By the use of Content delivery networks (CDN), you get global access rapidly.

Total control on customization – you can manage the configuration of the server and dictate how your server works to deliver optimal results for your business.

Power – many video streaming hosting service hosts provide encoding/transcoding services that utilize powerful servers for fast processing of your videos.

Security with private video hosting – no one else has access to your server except your company and the company that offers your dedicated server hosting and web hosting services.

video hosting service

Affordablebest video hosting service is made available at an affordable cost as video streaming business has become the main source of income for individuals and businesses alike.

Features provided by a video host:

  • Live streaming video uploading
  • Video portals
  • Monetization via subscriptions, pay-per-view model, and advertisements
  • White label solution for customized branding
  • Total control on your video hosting website
  • Integration with existing desktop, web and mobile apps as well as servers

Now that you know how “free” video hosting sites have been eating away your business which is why having your own video hosting site is important, here is how to choose a video hosting service.

Steps to choose the right video hosting service:

Step 1: Define objective:

Brainstorm goals and write them down. Split them into low priority and high priority categories to simplify the process of defining objectives. In the process, remove any unimportant items, and, identify between one and four main goals for your video content. Ultimately it is these goals that will help you determine your specific needs and will guide you to choose a video platform to host.

Step 2: Evaluate requirements:

Assess the requirements to meet the specified goals/objectives. For instance, if your objective is to reach out to larger audience constantly, looking out for a service with Tier 1 CDN is going to be helpful so you can utilize the fastest speed globally.

If you are looking to create content and earn money through subscriptions, you can opt for video streaming providers who offer Netflix clone scripts. With this, you can opt for multiple monetization options like pay-per-view and subscriptions.

If you are looking for a secure platform to communicate about business matters, you need a platform with access control.

This explains how important it is to define objectives because essentially everything is going to be working to fulfill those objectives.

Step 3: Deciding on the content:

What kind of videos will meet your business goals? Is it through training, product demonstrations, meetings, advertisements, educational, funny, sports, meetings, live sessions with customers or something else? Whatever the kind of content you want to play in your videos, the video host you choose should be able to enhance the quality of it. For instance, sports videos usually need controls for pause, rewind and slow-motion, whereas, music videos require retro, cutting edge and grunge. All the video hosting providers will not provide all the options. So you will need to look specifically for the ones that will work for the kind of content that you will produce.

Step 4: Live vs on-demand video hosting:

Businesses can make use of live streaming for the webinar, workshop, events, training sessions etc. live streaming increases engagement with the audience as you, as a business can directly communicate with the viewers. Not to mention the amount of public attention that will be drawn to your business by such live streams. When you have planned for the live sessions, you can share the details of it with your clients, customers and business partners. You could also publicly announce it on social media platforms to garner attention. After all, it is most easy to spread a word via social media these days than any other medium of communication. Based on your products, services, and marketing goals, you can also do live product launches, new product creations, behind the scenes, conduct sessions with product creators. Individuals selling services online can conduct online training sessions to bring in leads, and make a mark for themselves in their respective industry or field of training.

Video on demand (VOD) is a subscription-based video hosting business where users can pay for the content they want to watch, and do so at their convenience. VOD works well for the entertainment industry. Also, it is suitable when live broadcasting is not mandatory. Not to forget that VOD gives us exact statistics and numbers that are difficult to comprehend in live streaming.

Live streaming and video on demand both serve different purposes and a business will need to use both in order to meet its business objectives. VOD is where you implement the kind of content you have planned for execution, and live streaming will be more of interacting with your target audience. However, when it comes to certain industries like event management, music, it could be a wise blend of live and VOD where equal weightage is given to both. News broadcasting companies will also be using both live and VOD wherein live videos are broken down by the news bits and saved for watch later as VOD. However, most of the news channels are not subscription-based yet, though digital magazines and newspapers have. With everything going online, we could expect many other business verticals that are offline, to go online soon.

 

The 5 Best CDN Service Providers for Video Streaming – A Comparison

The 5 Best CDN Service Providers for Video Streaming – A Comparison

There are two things that should top your priority list when you set out to start your own streaming platform: one, an excellent technology framework and two, an effective content delivery network (CDN). As far as streaming frameworks go, the kind of technology you choose largely pivots on the kind of streaming you plan to host on your website. For instance, if you plan on starting live streaming services, StreamNow is a fantastic framework. For over-the-counter entertainment, StreamView is your answer. And if you plan to start a video sharing service like YouTube, think of StreamTube. Each of these technologies is brilliantly coded and offers customized skins to make your service exclusive. Once you’ve picked your underlying technology, complete the circle by opting for a superior CDN service.

What Factors Should I Consider While Selecting a CDN Service?

Almost all CDN service providers are equipped to support video streaming. That said, each service has its own unique merits and demerits. Here are some factors you should consider before picking a CDN service.

Geographical Distribution:

The degree to which your viewers are geographically fragmented will play a role in how well your CDN service will work. Some of the more established video streaming CDNs are sparsely spread in certain regions; particularly in Asia. Regional CDN services are sometimes better suited to handle local needs.

The size of Event:

This is key. A large-scale event would need a special kind of CDN service to see it through. There is currently only a selection of video streaming CDNs that can support such events.

Monetary Investment:

Your financial commitment may be enough of a differentiator to filter out some CDN services. If you’re bootstrapped and prefer a piecemeal pricing model, pick a CDN service that fits your budget. Some video streaming CDNs ask for a large upfront investment.

What Are the Top 5 Video Streaming CDNs?

With your main considerations listed, browse through the five best CDN providers to take your pick.

1. MaxCDN:

MaxCDN has an international server footprint, rich with SSD-loaded servers. This web of servers augments the speed and performance of your website and allows you to create custom commands to control the functioning of your CDN service.

Key Features:

MaxCDN has a global reach and is spread across 90 countries. It has the ability to scale its load and also offers secure tokens, giving you the option to safeguard your content. REST APIs allow the integration of a variety of users, applications, and resources into your website. MaxCDN works seamlessly with auxiliary marketing platforms, such as WordPress and Magento, by offering superior plugins. The control console also gives you access to your domain with an added layer of security, created by SSL. The platform is adaptive and squares off fluctuations in speed and performance, giving users an optimal experience.

Monetary Investment – Free Trial + Price on request

2. CloudFlare:

CloudFlare is a veritable haven for broadcasters. It serves as a protective shield for your content and improves the speed of your website by keeping bots, crawlers, and threats at bay.

Key Features:

Once you have registered for its CDN service, you are instantly inducted into a global community, whose pathways are used to transmit your content. While you may think that setting up a CDN service may be bothersome and even overwhelming, you should know that CloudFlare will prove you wrong. With a setup process that will ease you through, you’ll find that you don’t need any hardware or software interventions to get your CDN going. Only a simple settings change in your DNS is required. CloudFlare offers a suite of analytics tools to let you delve into your user patterns.

Monetary Investment – Free Trial + $200/Month

3. Incapsula:

Incapsula is an incredible web of advanced networking, dynamic caching and content optimisation measures. It protects your website from threats such as DDos and effectively distributes data loads.

Key Features:

Incapsula’s notification system is equipped to report in real-time. Its CDN service operates by directing users to your website and then building a wall to block out threats. Video streams are then transmitted at speeds of up to 150% with a 60% lower-than-normal bandwidth consumption. Easy to install and activate, this CDN service comes with no additional hardware or software. It’s as easy as that.

Monetary Investment – Free Trial + $299/Month

4. Edgecast:

Edgecast is a video streaming CDN that is supported by a vast mosaic of servers spread across various geographies.

Key Features:

Edgecast is one of the only CDN services to offer live streaming support and handles fluctuations in web traffic effortlessly. Unlike most other CDN providers, Edgecast provides CDN services for dynamic as well as static content, enabling users to source streams as quickly as possible. Plus, with its analytics tool, you’ll be armed with regular updates and server reports. Tailored specially for rich media, it pairs well with Flash, Silverlight, and HTTP.

Monetary Investment – Price on request

5. Cachefly:

If your sole focus is speed, Cachefly’s a great bet.

Key Features:

Cachefly’s CDN service routes static content from your website to users up to ten times faster courtesy its network of 30 global points of presence (PoP). The locations of these PoPs lets content creators share rich content from one end of the world to the other at breakneck speeds. Specifically created as an on-demand CDN service, Cachefly upholds website performance and works to reduce timeouts and dips in performance quality.

Monetary Investment – $99 to $409/Month

Picking a CDN that’s right for you is as important as picking a pair of shoes that fit. Consider your purpose, your requirement and the kind of streaming services you plan to offer. Think of StreamNow, StreamView and StreamTube to breathe life into your brand. And select a CDN service that makes your platform stand out. It’s never been easier than now.

 

What Is a CDN and What Is Its Purpose in Video Streaming?

What Is a CDN and What Is Its Purpose in Video Streaming?

Let’s cut right to the chase. What is a content delivery network? A content delivery network, or a CDN, is as integral to video streaming as the camera you use to capture your stream. A CDN is a technology framework that transports various forms of content, quickly and economically, to myriad nodes. These nodes could include tablets, mobiles, set-top boxes, gaming consoles and web browsers. Regardless of where you are on the internet and what kind of content you’re browsing, it’s likely that every tiny fragment of data you’re consuming is enveloped in a CDN. CDNs are designed to solve a fundamental problem that plagues virtually every netizen: latency.

Latency is the lag that exists between when you give a web page a load command and when the page actually appears. While there are several reasons behind why the latency of a page may be high, the chief one is the geographical distance between your computer and the hosting server of the web page. A CDN resolves to reduce this distance, in turn, augmenting the performance of the website in question.

If you’re at the beginning of your video broadcast journey, remember to also pick a robust, versatile framework to pair with your CDN. Regardless of your need, Streamhash’s three new technology variants are ideal for every kind of webcasting brand. With StreamView you can create your own over-the-top entertainment platform, with StreamTube, your very own YouTube, and with StreamNow, an exclusive live streaming software.

How Does a CDN Work?

We already know that a CDN attempts to reduce the physical stretch between a web server and a user. Here’s a spotlight on how it really works in two simple steps:

Step 1. Cache Content:

A CDN doesn’t always visit a website server to fetch content. Instead, it resorts to storing multiple versions of content across geographies in storage banks called caches. These caches are also known as points of presence or PoPs.

Step 2. Quality Coverage:

By arranging content across various digital regions, users are assured superlative coverage. If a French user tries to access Indian content, for example, the content needn’t be routed from India. It can simply be fetched from a local French PoP.

Who Would Need a CDN?

CDN video streaming underpins more than 50% of worldwide Internet traffic today, and the number is only rising every year. Amazingly, many CDN video streaming services are free, and wrapping your web page in an effective CDN can significantly reduce your inter-country latency. However, for users within your geography, a CDN video streaming tool could actually slow down your website. This is because it could re-route local traffic to a remote PoP, when it could link directly to a user’s computer in the vicinity. Evaluate your requirement carefully to check whether CDN video streaming could make a material difference to your website performance. Sectors that embrace CDNs wholeheartedly include advertising, media, digital gaming, e-commerce, mobile, healthcare, education and government services. CDN video streaming presents utility for a variety of stakeholders. Here’s how.

For Technology Companies:

With video playing the main lead in most companies’ communication strategy, CDN video streaming becomes a coveted tool to stay relevant in the digital space. Also, as video gravitates towards an HTTP-based model, there is a huge amount of novel, the premium content being produced by content creators. A CDN enables these owners to draw revenue, safeguard content and reduce costs.

For Customers:

Why customers, you ask? Customers needn’t be acquainted with the concept of a CDN at any stage. They don’t need to be. However, the consumer experience is intertwined with the operations of a CDN. The fact that a customer can watch a video on YouTube at any time, without worrying about the whole clip buffering at one go, is thanks to an on-demand CDN. Think about which CDN video streaming tool will fit your content format the best, in order to give your customers a world-class viewing experience.

For Content Owners:

As a content owner, you ought to know which CDN can package your content in the most compelling way. An effective CDN video streaming technology can minimize costs, present users with seamless content and create new avenues for premiumisation.

What Are the Types of CDNs?

A CDN could manifest as one of three primary classes: a general purpose CDN, an on-demand video CDN and a live video CDN. Let’s take a closer look at each of these, and why CDN video streaming may be of value to you.

General Purpose CDNs:

General purpose CDNs have existed well before the advent of video. As mentioned earlier, you’ve likely come across them on the internet while scouring a website or streaming a song on YouTube. A general purpose CDN accelerates web traffic by retrieving cached content from various regions. CDNs, although nifty in their functioning, can be tricky tools to implement. They rely on a widespread server spread, whereas the server footprint in most countries is nascent. General purpose CDNs are also challenged by language fragmentation. Language clusters within a limited geography may warrant a plethora of CDN video streaming layers to facilitate penetration across markets.

On-Demand Video CDNs:

Over the years, CDNs have evolved and new formats have emerged:

Generation 1. Direct Download:

A direct download means that a video needs to be downloaded before it can be viewed. The challenge here is that while shorter clips can be downloaded quickly, longer ones, like movies and large applications can prove cumbersome and time-consuming.

Generation 2. Progressive Download:

Think YouTube and you’ll know what a progressive download is. The medium entails a bit-by-bit download, allowing a user to begin viewing content within the first five seconds. The premise here is that the consumption and download of the content will be concurrent, with the viewer being able to watch a part of the content while the rest is being downloaded. As internet connections improve, the speed of downloads is outweighing the bitrates required to deliver standard-definition content. Thus, progressive downloads are proving to be effective and practical.

Generation 3. HTTP Streaming:

HTTP streaming is tethered to adaptive bitrate delivery. This technology works to throttle on-demand content by breaking it down into tiny bits. Then, it streams each one separately at varying bitrates to tailor a particular stream to a user’s video player.

If you pick StreamView or StreamTube to get your streaming service going, an on-demand CDN is for you.

Live Video CDNs:

Now that we know that CDNs are typically used to cache data, here’s a question. What about live streaming? Surely, you can’t cache a live stream. And you’re right, you can’t. Enter, live streaming CDNs. A live streaming CDN can be crafted to either display ultra-high bandwidth pipes to transmit content instantly to users, or low bandwidth pipes that use reflectors to accelerate content transmission. Live streaming CDNs can be costly, especially when a viewer population is likely to fluctuate and possibly, peak. Plus, live video technology may not be in continual use, meaning that costs will not be adequately recovered. Having said that, live streaming is picking up steam in most spheres. In the years to come, live streaming CDNs will likely make it to mainstream communication. StreamNow would be an ideal layer atop a live streaming CDN.

A CDN can serve as a magic fix in smoothening content transmitted to your users. Integrate a CDN into your streaming platform to see the difference. A remarkable viewing experience awaits.