Tag Archives: Product Updates

Introducing… [drum-roll]….Ustream Pro Broadcasting!

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The Next Generation of Ad-Free Broadcasting:

Last November, Ustream launched Ad-Free Broadcasting, a simple way for broadcasters to remove ads from their video and channel pages. Since that time, we’ve helped thousands of broadcasters send their message directly to their viewers.  Today, the Ustream Product and Engineering team is excited to announce the next evolution of Ad-Free: Ustream Pro Broadcasting.

With Ustream Pro Broadcasting, users will get all the benefits of an ad-free package with a ton of great new features to customize the broadcasting experience. To top it off, we’re giving away all of these new features for the same price as our previous ad-free plans. Each plan comes with a different set of features, so check the Pro Broadcasting overview to see which package is right for you.

New Pro Broadcasting features:

So what are these awesome new features? Here are just a few of the new benefits that are available!

  • Ad-Free Broadcasting – Ustream Pro Broadcasting packages remove all in-video ads, as well as display ads on your channel page. Each package comes with a set number of “Viewer Hours” (one viewer for an hour, two viewers for half an hour each, etc.  There is a “Viewer Hour Calculator” on the pro broadcasting page to help you decide how much you need)
  • Ustream Extensions –  Extensions is Ustream’s new “widget” framework that will allow you to integrate outside services to increase your social media fanbase, sell products, or just promote yourself with custom banners. Current extensions include Facebook Fan Page Like ButtonTwitter Follow Button, iTunes Promotion, Amazon Promotion, Thumbplay Ring Tones, and Custom Uploaded Banners. We’ll be adding new services in the coming months.
  • Branding: Want to control the look and feel of your broadcast? Co-branding allows you to upload and add your own logo to the Ustream player. Not a fan of the “Ustream Live” logo? Get rid of it with the Full-Branding make the player 100% you!
  • IFrame Access: Subscribers to the Enterprise package will have direct access to three html iframes within the channel page. These iframes allow you to embed banners, maps, widgets, and pretty much anything else you would need to customize your channel
  • Embed Controls: With Embed Restriction, broadcasters who want absolute control over the distribution of their content are able to specify a set of domains where their streams can be embedded. Broadcasters who purchase the enterprise package will also be able to remove their content from the Ustream site by hiding their live channel pages.

This Week in Product: New Channel Features – (Social Stream Moderators, mRSS and Video Player Auto-Resize).

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Hi there!

Alden from the Ustream Product team here.

Broadcasters,  we’ve added three new features to help you control the experience on your channel. All three are live today:

I. Add Moderators to the Social Stream
II. Automatic Player Re-sizing
III. Video mRSS Feeds

I. Social Stream Moderators

Now your chat moderators are also your social stream moderators. In the “Chat and Videos Widget” settings in the Dashboard, you can add moderators.  If you’ve already added moderators for your IRC chat, these moderators now work for both your chat and your Social Stream.

Start typing a user name and it will auto-fill. Select a name and it will be added to the list.

Once you’ve added someone as a moderator, all they need to do is:

1. Go to your channel page at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/this-is-my-channel-name

2. Login to their Ustream account

3. Mouse over the messages in your Social Stream.

Upon mouseover, your moderator will see small text links that say “Ban” and “Delete” at the end of each message. Click these to ban a user or delete a message in the social stream. It’s a “silent ban,” so the user who typed the message will continue to see their messages appear, but the messages won’t be visible to anyone else.

II. Player Auto-Resize

Some broadcasters broadcast in 4:3 (squarish, old television aspect ratio) and other broadcasters use 16:9 (widescreen). About a year ago we switched our standard viewer to favor 16:9 widescreen broadcasts, because the majority of broadcasts are done in this aspect ratio.  However, there is still a lot of content being produced in 4:3, so this was resulting in a smaller player and black bars on the side.  We developed a new smarter player that detects the incoming broadcast and resizes accordingly.  The result?  No more black bars!

See the before and after below:

Before:

After:

Next, we’re working on a feature that will help call the animals to the pond when you’re watching. Release date TBD.

III. mRSS Feed for All Videos / Highlights

Using the URL http://www/ustream.tv/channel/[channelname]/videos.rss for Videos or http://www/ustream.tv/channel/[channelname]/highlights.rss, you can pull an mRSS feed of the videos and highlights, respectively, for a given channel. This can be used by broadcasters to create dynamic widgets based on their channels as well as implement Ustream videos on their website in a dynamic manner (similar to an API). The RSS feed contains the following data:
  • media:content – type, medium, duration, height, width
  • media:title
  • media:description
  • media:thumbnail
  • media:category
  • media:backLinks — This is the link back to the ustream video/highlight page
  • media:player – This is URL to the video page
  • media:embed — These are the embed parameters if you want to automatically generate a video player embed
  • media:price – This is the price of the video, only included if this is PPV or Subscription content

Well, that’s all for now. We’ve got a few more updates coming to the Social Stream that we’ll talk about later this week!

This Week in Product: Videos Widget

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Hi there — Peter from Product here…again (*sigh*). Honestly, if I had my druthers — and I rarely do — I’d release a bunch of features and I’d never tell the lot of you. But Joanna, Tony, and the rest of the Marketing Team here at Ustream insist that I keep our faithful users up-to-date, so I begrudgingly offer you the latest product update: The Videos Widget.

Some of you may have noticed that your favorite channels now have a new component to the right of the video. It’s no longer just the Chat and the Social Stream, but a Rolodex of the broadcaster’s latest recorded videos. This is our new Videos Widget, and it’s live today for all our broadcasters. Here’s how it works:

By default, the widget appears on the channel page in the same area as the social stream and chat. If you’re a broadcaster and you don’t like it, too bad. Just kidding, you can turn it off in your Dashboard > Manage My Channel > Chat and Videos Widget > Recorded Videos Tab.

The videos widget is the default widget to show first, unless the channel is live. If the channel is live, either the social stream or chat will appear by default (whichever the broadcaster has opted for).

Clicking the title of a video opens that video in a new browser tab/window. This allows you to stay on the channel page while surfing all the great recorded content.

If the broadcaster has more than 9 videos, a “View All” link appears at the bottom. Clicking “View All” will bring you to a new page with all of the broadcaster’s videos.

We only display the broadcaster’s own videos. So if you’re a broadcaster and your videos widget looks kind of empty, don’t complain to us; keep streaming!

The videos widget is embeddable. Just use the same embed code, accessed by clicking “Embed” on the channel page, and the videos widget will tag along for the ride.

Well, that’s all for now, but I’ll regretfully be back to share more updates with you soon ;) Keep streamin’!

Ustream Debuts Multiview with Zac Brown Band Concert on Sunday, Sept. 19

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Live video is getting more captivating today with the release of Ustream’s new Multiview experience, which will be used during Zac Brown Band’s concert from Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Sunday, Sept. 19.

This concert will debut the new Ustream Multiview technology and mark the first concert on Ustream to stream live with five simultaneous camera angles, allowing users to pick their own view from six choices of the show. We created Ustream Multiview to give you the ability to watch the concert from your favorite angle. What’s more, you can chat live with other viewers using Social Stream during the show. This new offering is available to selected partners at this time.

Watch the show live here starting at 7p Pacific Time/8p Mountain Time/10p Eastern Time on Sunday, Sept. 19 to check out your favorite vantage point for enjoying Zac Brown Band from the comfort of your computer!

New Look for Ustream Today!

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Your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you — Ustream has a different look today! You will notice some changes on our site this morning. We released a new updated look and feel and some new features that aim to enhance your site experience – the ability to discover shows that interest you, and to broadcast more easily.

We’re taking a big step forward today and we have more exciting changes to come soon. Please share your feedback; it’s valuable to us as we’re continuing to iterate.

Here is a quick update on the changes, which you’ll find are primarily housed on the homepage and within the Ustream account dashboard.

Homepage changes:

  • Cleaner look and feel to allow for better navigating of live and recorded events
  • Redesigned header and footer, making it easier to find the content you’re looking for on the site

Dashboard changes:

  • Improved interface for managing your account and shows
  • Tailored account dashboard first displays the top four shows you care about and then how to manage your account and shows
  • Enhanced functionality to find your friends through Facebook, Twitter and other communities
  • Improved video page enables more sharing options along with easy access to share with the most popular social networks
  • Features more content, including upcoming events

We look forward to hearing from you on these new changes, and stay tuned for more to come in the following months. To submit your feedback, please visit our Support Center here.