12 May The Benefits Of Cloud Video Hosting
Services Manager Randall Kiesewetter talks about why cloud hosting is the way to go for video.
When it comes to video content, high availability and low latency are the name of the game. Whether you’re in the business of delivering news, entertainment or sports, here’s a closer look at how cloud video hosting can help your business serve up the best in live and on-demand streaming media.
Cloud media hosting brings viewers closer to the action
With video streaming overtaking live TV programming for the first time in history, today’s digital-hungry consumer wants a fast, reliable viewing experience across multiple devices. That’s why online video hosting using a content delivery network (CDN) is essential.
A CDN is a geographically distributed platform with the sole purpose of delivering high-performance, high-availability web content to users via a network of servers deployed all around the globe. It may sound like a techie concept, but the content you’re used to seeing every day – such as your favourite Netflix drama series, or the streaming footy game – is likely delivered via a CDN.
For instance, say someone in Berlin requests a live feed of the Tour Down Under cycling race on their mobile app. Instead of data to yoyoing back and forth across the planet, the CDN dynamically detects where the request originated and streams the media directly to the device from servers in Germany.
Delivering content this way greatly reduces wait time, resulting in a better experience for end users. And thanks to multiple bit rates, it’s now possible to remove buffering from any player for any user on any device. You can even change the video quality on the fly.
Online video hosting = high availability
Ask any digital-savvy person and they’ll tell you there’s nothing more annoying than a lost connection (probably the only reason people still sometimes prefer to buy DVDs). To safeguard against unexpected blips and glitches during video playback, there needs to be a backup of everything in the system that could possibly go awry.
The good news is that cloud media hosting basically guarantees high availability when you use redundant architecture. This redundancy is a simple concept to understand – it’s another way to access the content if and when you need it.
For example, if you only have one main point of connection for every video stream and that fails, then you have nothing to rely on – the broadcast is over. But with a multi-layered cloud environment hosting multiple servers (streaming, database, web and ingest transfer), there’s no single point of failure – if one part of the system stops working, you can shift the traffic over to another, greatly reducing the chance of a dropped connection for viewers.
Think of it as the backup generator you’ll want to have at your outdoor wedding, or at the stadium during the biggest game of the season. If the main power goes down, you have a plan B that will allow the show to go on.
Horizontal scaling for any workload
Whether you have one, 10 or 100 videos to transcode per day, it’s likely the cloud can handle whatever you throw at it. With the ability to scale horizontally to handle any workload, cloud video services offer you the ability to spin up multiple worker servers, all humming along in parallel to deliver the output you need.
Simply provide your cloud services provider with your input file and they should be able to do the rest – transcoding it into multiple high-quality variants for every video and then transferring your data to the cloud-based archive storage of your choice.
They should also be able to configure and integrate your data to different cloud storage providers as part of the process for getting content into the platform so you can easily access your data anytime, anywhere.
Endless cloud video storage
Of all the types of content on the web today, video is by far the most storage-intensive and, frankly, having 150 terabytes sitting on 50 different hard drives is not a practical way to manage backups.
Because the cloud has essentially infinite storage capacity, your cloud service provider can move all your video storage into the cloud, which means you don’t have to worry about managing offline backup.
With the cloud, you can add as much content as you want, giving you the ability to store and play back large media libraries – no need to worry about running out of space. From transit to transcode to delivery, a cloud media hosting platform leverages the best the cloud has to offer and enables you to deliver content exactly where it’s needed, whenever it’s needed.
Hostworks recently delivered over 240 hours of live broadcast streams for Channel 7’s “40 Days of Sport” project, and cloud media services played a significant role. The cutting-edge solution provided sports fans with a seamless online viewing experience while allowing Channel 7 to reach previously untapped markets via the mobile and tablet applications.
Scalable, cloud-based video services are paving the way for live and on-demand streaming. If you need to store and stream a lot of high-quality video, drop us a line and find out how our amazing team of engineers can build the perfect bespoke cloud video solution for your business.