Live Streaming Services and Web Casting

What is Live Streaming

                                The live stream is an on-line media broadcasting platform that allows you to Watch, Create and Share videos in real-time. Using a device that has a strong Internet Connection and an App or Website to act as a medium for streaming. Today TV broadcasts, Social media, and Social media videos can also be streamed

The term live streaming refers to broadcast live streams of one-to-many connections that go out to multiple users at once. Videoconferencing technologies like Skype and Hangouts Meet work on real-time communication protocols rather than the protocols used by one-to-many live stream broadcasts.

The Difference between Regular streaming and Live streaming is the Difference between a Shooting that has been improvised, edited in the contents like speeches, acting, etc., Vs.  the Shooting that is telecast to the audience in real-time while capturing.

How Livestream works?

The Main steps behind the working of Live Streams:-

  • Capturing

  • Encoding/Compressing

  • Delivering media to servers

  • Transcoding, Tanscrating, Transiting, and Transmuxing

  • Adaptive Streaming

  • Streaming video on any connection to any device.

  • Delivering a great streaming experience to the audience around the world

Live Capturing:-

When we talk about the process of Live streaming. It’s all starts with a Camera, Today's Cameras are highly advanced and able to capture high-quality videos and photos at a stunning 4k resolution. This much resolution requires to support a digital video coming out of the camera. And the cables are used to transfer this signal. That cables should withstand the transferring of a large amount of data. Cables like HDMI and SDI are used depends upon the streaming. HDMI cables are used often but to support 4k signal transferred to long-distance SDI cables will be used.

Smartphones can be used for some live streaming, but for some serious production high-quality cameras play a major role. The cameras and other devices which capture videos are connected to a switcher that transmits between them.   Through XLR cables audio is transferred to the mixer. The switcher will add audio from the mixer at the final output signal. It also has the capability to add titles, animations, and graphics. 

Encoding/Compressing:-

After capturing the video it has to be compressed and stored. The video signal is compressed by an encoder into a codec. Codecs in available in all shapes and sizes. The video should be compressed from gigabytes to megabytes. An industry standard is H.264 so that the video can be easily streamed.

The encoder can be built inside the camera or it can also available as software. Most of the time the encoder is built as modern broadcast software. After the video is compressed by the encoder, it still has to be packaged and run through a real-time transfer protocol (RTP) for delivery across the internet.  The large stream of continuous data needs to get broken into small information packets. And then it will be recombined and decoded later as a continuous signal by the media player

Delivering media to the server:-

After completed the packaging the video stream is pushed into the media server. The server might be on the same system or remote like somewhere in the cloud. There is a number of software available in the market called media server software. You can install it on your own server or third-party cloud platform. So that you can able to manage on your own.

Transcoding, Transrating, Transiting, and Transmuxing:-

The server receives the video from the encoder and customizes the video as needed. Media servers will transcode the video into the new codec. Then they transize the video into various resolutions and also translate the data by different bitrates. And it will also transmit or repackage the video content into different protocols. The final output video content is known as egress. The media server is important to give a great viewing experience to the audience by serving the customized video content at various resolutions and bitrates depends upon the device and choice of format they want.

Adaptive Streaming:-

Adaptive Bitrate Streaming (ABR) is important because everyone likes that their live streaming should reach many audiences. But not all audiences are going to watch the stream in the same manner. Some of them have high-quality internet and Some have poor WI-FI connections or even lite. Some will watch on the big screen and some watch on mobile phones. Here comes the ABR comes into play. The media server provides “ABR” renditions like items on the menu that have different resolutions and bitrates created. Then the technology will take care of choosing the best renditions for viewing based on the size of the screen and network available. It will switch options quickly as resources fluctuate. ABR will give the audience the best viewing experience to the audience on various viewing conditions.

Streaming Video on any Connections to any device:- 

The format of the video will get change depends on the device or software audiences use to watch videos. For example. If the viewers using a set-top box connected to the TV may use RTMP. I-Phones only accepted the HLS. Whereas another browser player may run through MPEG. To meet these different kinds of protocols Media server can customize the live stream into whatever protocols required. This process is known as transmuxing.

The media server plays major roles like adding additional information, Saving the video as a file, etc., so it requires more bandwidth to support larger audiences.

Delivering great streaming experiences around the world:-

We don’t know where the viewers are located. They may be located in different locations or countries. The distance of the audience far away from the media server may cause the issue of transfer signal to reach an audience. It will end up in buffering and latency

To solve these kinds of issues, broadcasters use a CDN (Content Delivery Network). It is a network of server which is spread across the world. And it has the capability of handling a large number of data. The server which is close to the audience is called the edge server. The video content is delivered through the network and it will connect the edge server close to them. Some Broadcasters build their own CDN software and Some use the software which is available in the market

Live video streaming on social media:- 

Social media network has their own CDN. Networks like Youtube, Facebook, Instagram accept RTMP format and have their own CDN for user-generated videos.  Many broadcasters stream directly from encoders to social media networks.

Last Words:- 

There are lots of Live streaming service providers are there in the market. But Live streaming is all about using the right technology tools and the company which has knowledge about it. Audiences can view the streaming globally on a variety of platforms at the highest quality streaming experience is possible. If you choose the best live streaming service provider you need.

Differences Between Webcasting and Live Streaming