Now, it's been years that almost all the viewers around the globe have started watching videos about different fields. The Internet certainly has played the key role in streaming videos to the viewers. With an advent of devices and technology, the process has eased like never before. If you're unaware of the concept called video on demand, let me tell you in brief about it. In simple terms, these are the systems that allow an audience to watch or listen to the audiovisual content as per their choice. Through VOD, your viewers can select the specific videos to watch at the time and place suitable to them.
When you stream the video, you transmit your data from source to another location using the network. You have various options to stream your videos. Which option to choose for streaming videos depends on which content you wish to stream and who are going to watch your videos. Thinking from the perspective of providing services to the clients, I would mention three primary methods using which you can stream the videos. They are as follows:
> Progressive Download- Viewers get original streaming of audiovisual content through the method called HTTP streaming. The downloaded video would be temporarily saved on the computer for you to watch it. It cannot jump ahead in timeline as it is linear in nature. The video that has been buffered is played online as a playback and rest of the download goes on simultaneously in the background. It helps you to watch the videos without interruption. You don't need to wait until the entire video is downloaded. I remember the days when the internet speed used to be too slow and how I used to wait patiently to download YouTube videos for the play bar to fill up before I press 'play' button entirely. Videos streamed using this method have single bit-rate. No matter, which kind of connection you belong to; only single video file is delivered at a time. After completion of downloading, all the viewers can watch the video in whatever bit-rate it has been encoded. Content-provider at this moment funds for the aggregate bandwidth since the entire video is downloaded. The major advantage of using this streaming method is you need not download any particular software or server to use it. It is precisely similar to the contents of regular websites as it uses archetypical HTTP over TCP.
> Streaming Protocols- Progressive download takes place using different types of protocols that are exclusively designed for streaming with a particular mechanism. They are Real Time Messaging Protocol (RTMP) and Real Time Streaming Protocol (RTSP). RTMP discharges media streaming in pieces. Whereas, progressive download uses HTTP to send media files. Streaming server is an essential thing for any streaming. This method proves to be beneficial because a video is not downloaded on the system that you have. As per player settings, the video is transferred in pieces. Once all the chunks are played, data is automatically deleted by the player. Hence, content duplication over the hard drive of the computer is easily inhibited. Interestingly, there's one more benefit for you. You can easily play the video. As per your choice you can send the request to the streaming server using the player. Accordingly, you will get appropriate chunks belonging to the most relevant category. It is more efficient as it downloads only a part of file that is actually being watched. Even though video streaming is offered at single bit-rate, lots of players also provide an opportunity to the viewers to change the bit-rate.
> Adaptive Bit-rate Streaming- This perhaps could be the latest technology executed to stream the videos. Videos are delivered over HTTP, but at the same time, UDP too can be used for streaming at different bit rates. Based on your location, contemporary local network provision, and computing resources, bit rates of streamed content can vary. Its operation is as follows:
● Files encoded for by video generator at different bit-rates.
● Viewer's video player observes networking and computing capabilities to finalize the most compatible bit-rate.
● The viewer can enjoy streaming without any hassles at best possible quality depending upon the conditions.
Looking the dynamism and applicability of this method, you can easily find major corporate firms in the world using it for their streaming purposes.
Now, you might be confused a bit regarding the best one you could use, aren't you?
As I have said it before, it all depends on your type of operation and your target audience. If your viewers are going to use a desktop for watching videos merely and if copyright isn't a big deal for you, then pure progressive streaming is fair enough is what I believe. On the other hand, if you want to stream your content compatible over multiple devices or security is your prime interest, I would advise you to use other two streaming procedures.
I hope to take into account these methods; you would be able to enjoy on-demand streaming.