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July 18, 2019

Enabling Low-Latency Interactive Streaming Applications for Worldwide Audiences

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For media organizations to launch interactive services that increase audience engagement and grow their subscriber base, it is vital to overcome two significant obstacles: high latency and unsynchronized video.

To date, the conversation around latency has typically focused on the narrow, specific parameters needed to achieve very low latency within a room or between two buildings, primarily in KVM-type applications. That’s not going to change for workflows moving video from one to few, or even one to 1,000 devices. However, what happens when scaling up to send video from one point to half a million viewers all around the world, or more?

Until recently, traditional broadcast has been the only way to reach such an audience. But broadcast infrastructure can be costly to build and limited to a relatively small pool of content providers. The combination of robust cloud services with new streaming formats, encoding technologies, and media player solutions offers a compelling alternative designed to simplify, and perhaps even democratize, the launch of interactive services.

A powerful example of this combination incorporates Videon’s Edge Compute Encoders, AWS Elemental MediaStore and Amazon CloudFront from Amazon Web Services (AWS), and NexPlayer’s Android and iOS player SDKs. Along with CMAF (the Common Media Application Format for segmented media), HLS (HTTP Live Streaming) and MPEG DASH (Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP) formats, these technologies from Videon, AWS, and NexPlayer create opportunities to efficiently and effectively scale worldwide, with ultra-low latency.

CMAF is key to this model because it enables video streams to be broken into smaller segments, which supports dramatic reductions in latency. For this reason, we’ve been working with AWS over the past year to test CMAF workflows with AWS Elemental MediaLive and Amazon CloudFront to ensure that our low-cost edge compute encoder works seamlessly with the AWS Cloud to enable low-latency streaming worldwide at scale. We’ve likewise partnered with NexPlayer to ensure its player supports a CMAF, HLS, and DASH workflow. NexPlayer has gone one step further by adding synchronization into the mix, and that element will enable a truly unified interactive live video experience.

Thanks to our work with AWS and NexPlayer, we already have reference customers working with proof-of-concept implementations and planning live deployments. From live auctions to live sports, this new model of synchronized low-latency video delivery at scale will support an array of new, exciting, and profitable use cases.

By the way, you can read the official announcement about our collaboration with AWS and NexPlayer here.

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