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Direct HLS Video Streaming to M3U8

Direct HLS Video Streaming to M3U8

Are you looking for a service that can provide HLS compatible live and on-demand video output? This article provides details around using IBM Cloud Video for direct HLS video streaming and the associated M3U8 manifest file format. Using this approach bypasses other methods from IBM Cloud Video such as our web based player, API based player offerings and our player SDKs.

To help guide content owners, this article discusses what is HLS and M3U8. It then outlines the benefits and uses cases for this approach, such as using third party players. It then covers what features are and are not available in this approach, letting content owners make an informed decision on their delivery strategy.

How to Use Social Media to Promote a Live Stream Event

How to Use Social Media to Promote a Live Stream Event

Just about every minute of every day, there’s a live stream event taking place somewhere in the world — on social media platforms, corporate networks, and entertainment company apps. From the recent solar eclipse to the Mayweather-McGregor fight to the MTV Video Music Awards, online users are showing a healthy appetite for seeking out live video events to watch.

Of course, every event needs an audience — and given the effort that goes into a live streaming event, video planners want to ensure that, at start time, there’s a large and highly engaged audience. Social media can be used to whip up enthusiasm before the event, encourage discussion during the live stream, and continue the conversation after it ends. 

If you are looking for some additional advice for marketing your video content, or creating marketing videos, also be sure to check out our on-demand 9 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Video Marketing Strategy seminar.

How to Setup a Live Stream in 8 Steps

How to Setup a Live Stream in 8 Steps

Want to know how to setup a live stream?

This article walks you through 8 steps from start to finish in terms of managing the sources and settings for your live stream. This includes everything from choosing a video source and lighting, to a live encoder and managing your connection. If you consider yourself already setup on the video and audio side, skip to step 4. However, if you want to know more about this step of the process or are considering establishing a studio, please read our Video Studio Recommendations guide.

  1. Camera or other video source selection
  2. Lighting setup
  3. Audio source selection
  4. Choosing a delivery method
  5. Selecting an encoder for live streaming
  6. Inputting encoder settings
  7. Securing a stable upload speed
  8. Transcoding

Tour de Office: Live Streaming The Way to a Healthier Workplace Culture

Tour de Office: Live Streaming The Way to a Healthier Workplace Culture

Tour de Office, an Australian nonprofit, is encouraging office-bound workers to get more active while raising money for charity — and streaming video plays a key role.

“The growing knowledge economy is putting more people behind desks for longer periods of time,” says Tudor Marsden-Huggins, an avid cyclist and founder of Employment Office, a recruitment agency based in Australia. “Research shows that sitting for more than four hours per day greatly increases your risk of chronic disease.”

In 2011, Marsden-Huggins launched Tour de Office, a week-long relay event to raise awareness of those health risks. The events are part friendly athletic competition, part fundraising challenge. Participating companies compete for a charity of their choice, and Tour de Office live streams the action online to maximize donations. (See how a live stream solution like this quickly scales.)

Why Practice Makes Perfect for Live Video Productions

Why Practice Makes Perfect for Live Video Productions

An expert in North Korea agreed to an on-camera interview with the BBC in March but a few seconds in, everything went pear-shaped.

First the man’s young daughter walked in and he gently tried to coax her out during the interview. Then his eight-month-old son strolled in on a squeaky walker. Finally, the man’s wife frantically tried to herd both children out of the room.

The clip went viral, to the point where Robert E. Kelly, the so-called “BBC Dad,” felt compelled to give a press conference explaining himself.

Most glitches during a live stream don’t rise to that level of comedic gold, with a lot of them related to delivery issues that could be corrected for through scaling as mentioned in this Scaling Video Delivery to Reach Massive Audiences white paper. Very often, though, unexpected problems during live streams leave the impression that the presentation is unprofessional. But presenters can salvage such moments by taking some cues from the world of improv comedy.

Multi-Tiered Distribution for ECDN

Multi-Tiered Distribution for ECDN

Interested in delivering internal video to large, potentially massive audiences? Are you running into delivery issues not at the service level, but due to congestion caused at the ISP level?

IBM Cloud Video’s ECDN was created to address this need. However, large network setups have still seen congestion issues from their video applications due to multiple video distribution servers pulling videos into the enterprise network through a central ISP connection. To address the challenge resulted from hub-and-spoke network architectures IBM Cloud Video has introduced a multi-tiered distribution approach for ECDN. This creates a distribution hierarchy to further resolve congestion issues for some setups. In situations like a hub-and-spoke network, where there are central hubs that are gone through for Internet access, users might go through a regional server instead to remove strain that might originally have been placed on the hub.

Read on to learn more about this approach and the hub-and-spoke network setups that will benefit from it.

Video Platform Management: Account Access and SSO

Video Platform Management: Account Access and SSO

Video is shaping the way organizations do business, both internally and with customers. When surveying over 1,500 executives, Wainhouse Research discovered that over 81% describe online video as an effective tool for communicating work-related information. At the same time, dramatic shifts are happening within marketing toward video applications. In fact, by 2014, 93% of marketing professionals were using video content for online marketing.

This creates a situation where video is widely used amongst employees, but also used to drive and engage prospects. IBM Cloud Video created services to address both of these needs, although they exist in separate products. This added additional work and extra coordination from those who might work cross functionality for their companies video needs. To address this, IBM Cloud Video has introduced an organization feature for video platform management. This allows administrators to access both accounts, and also quickly switch between them if they need to shift from an internal to external activity. In addition, the organization feature launches with an expansion to the login process through the introduction of SSO (Single Sign-on) administration access. This allows individuals to login and begin managing their accounts using the same login credentials they use for other applications at their job. Ultimately, these changes simplify managing a company’s streaming activities, while also giving an easier, safer way to access

Streaming Media Readers’ Choice Awards 2017: Vote IBM Cloud Video

Streaming Media Readers' Choice Awards 2017

The Streaming Media Readers’ Choice Awards 2017 are now open for voting. Conducted annually since 2007, the awards represent the online video industry’s shining stars as selected by users. Categories range from cloud based solutions, like the Live Streaming Platform category, to physical offerings, like Encoding Hardware (Live). This year, IBM Cloud Video has been nominated in the following categories for the following solutions:

– Cloud Encoding/Transcoding Service (Streaming Manager)
– End-to-End Workflow Solution (Streaming Manager / Streaming Manager for Enterprise)
– Enterprise Video Platform (Streaming Manager for Enterprise)
– Live Streaming Platform (Streaming Manager)
– Media & Entertainment Video Platform (M&E)
– OTT Platform for MSO and MVPD (M&E)
– Small/Medium Business Video Platform (Ustream)
– Video Optimization Solution (Streaming Manager / Streaming Manager for Enterprise)


Please show your support by voting for IBM Cloud Video using the link above and a valid email address. You have our sincerest gratitude.

For more information on the awards, including our history at them, please read on.

IBM Cloud Video ECDN with Multicast is expanding enterprise video delivery options

Ramp multicast

Live streamed video is increasingly popular and useful for enterprises, but it is bandwidth-intensive. As a result, IT executives face the challenge of serving live video feeds to an increasing number of concurrent viewers without causing a network slowdown or outage.

For almost 20 years, many large enterprises, as well as cable and telecom providers, have solved this challenge by using IP multicast because it’s optimal for delivering live video or linear TV to large audiences. While IP unicast sends separate streams to each viewer, IP multicast distributes a single stream of IP packets and it serves all viewers who request the video, regardless of the number of viewers. Bandwidth consumption is minimized at the internet connection point and on the local network.

New options have become available in IP multicast that makes it even more compelling for organizations with an IP multicast-enabled network—or those that could benefit from one. Read on to learn about them:

Deliver internal video without bottlenecks: Know what your network requires

Internal video delivery

It’s challenging for enterprises to deliver internal video because streaming video consumes so much bandwidth.  For instance, if a 100-person company site has a 100 megabit-per-second internet connection, and just 34 people watch a live stream of CEO town hall at their desktops at the same time, they can cause a network outage.

Three main approaches solve the problem. One is unicast delivery, where a single video stream is sent from the source to an onsite unicast server, which caches the content and distributes it to hundreds or even thousands of viewers while minimizing the impact on the internet connection and network.

A second approach is multicast delivery, where a single stream from the video source is received by a specially-configured router, which addresses the video packets so that they simultaneously serve multiple viewers at a site.  Cable and telecom companies use multicasting because of its bandwidth efficiency.

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