(You also find a German version of this article)
Ultra-Low Latency Live Video Streaming Signals a New Era for Interactivity
By Oliver Lietz, CEO and Founder at nanocosmos
Today’s consumers want to be engaged with live video. This is known commonly as the “lean forward” experience based on live video streaming. Whether people are visiting an auction site, gaming, gambling, or have a passion for sports betting, they want live results and interactive video features.
The good news is: now that live video streaming and cloud technologies have become ubiquitous, providing an interactive video experience is simpler than it used to be. A variety of vertical markets, such as sports betting, e-commerce, webcasting, auctions, gaming, polling, social retail, and entertainment, are finding it relatively easy to launch live video streaming and incorporate it into their existing service offerings.
However, the live video streaming experience has to be high quality on all platforms and devices. One of the biggest challenges service providers and platform operators face is end-to-end latency, which is the time difference between the camera and the viewer. Only ultra-low latency (ULL) values of around one second can enable interactive live streaming. So how can you ensure the latency and a high quality of service and experience for live streaming use cases?
Why Ultra Low Latency is Critical
ULL is key to achieving a superior interactive live video streaming experience because the very nature of activities like auctions, sports betting, and gaming requires them being delivered in near real time. A significant delay ruins the user experience and creates dissatisfaction with the service.
To assure ULL, service providers need a comprehensive solution for online live video streaming. Having control over the entire live streaming workflow, from the point the video is embedded in the web browser to distribution and the player, is important. You want to be able to monitor quality of service (QoS) and keep latency consistently low. Choosing a white-label solution with an API is also key for seamless integration into business products and greatly simplifies the live video streaming workflow
Strategies for Streamlining ULL Live Video Streaming
There are several imperative capabilities that you should look for today in a live video streaming solution in order to simplify the delivery of ULL video and boost viewer interactivity. Adaptive bitrate (ABR) playback on any mobile or desktop browser is an essential feature. You need to be able to automatically adjust video quality based on network conditions on the viewer side to avoid buffering and ensure that streams provide an ULL. In general, it’s best if you can keep the latency to about one second.
Live transcoding is a must-have capability if you want to do ABR live video streaming for different network situations on a global scale. Through transcoding, you can create different levels of quality streams in order to reach the widest possible range of audiences. For instance, viewers on mobile devices require a lower resolution video than those on larger screens.
Having real-time insight into QoS and QoE is important, too. Data and analytics can help you understand the quality that viewers are seeing. By collecting and analyzing real-time data throughout the entire live streaming workflow, you can improve live video streaming QoS and QoE. Make sure you select a solution that provides actionable insights and not just flashy looking dashboards. You want to be able to analyze metrics such as ABR quality, user experience, stream quality, player statistics, buffering, volume and connectivity of audience.
Finally, choosing a video streaming solution that is easy to integrate into an existing live video streaming workflow will enable rapid deployment of ULL interactive video applications. Many service providers today are turning to the cloud for the flexibility, scalability, and cost savings that it provides.
Driving Interactive Live Video Streaming: nanoStream Cloud Service
For more than 20 years, nanocosmos has been a key player in the live video streaming industry, providing its services to a number of leading betting and live gaming companies.
Our nanoStream Cloud service checks off all of the requirements that operators need today to deliver an end-to-end latency of around one second for interactive video streaming applications.
New capabilities on the nanoStream Cloud service, such as ABR playback, automatic live transcoding, and analytics, ensure that service providers can deliver the best possible QoS for ULL live streaming within any web browser.
What sets nanoStream Cloud apart from other services? nanoStream Cloud leverages a unique combination of software analytics, global CDN services, and an ABR player to achieve the exceptional QoS required for ULL live video streaming. By providing users with a complete end-to-end workflow, nanoStream Cloud simplifies live video streaming for web browser applications and offers a level of control that is not possible with any other solution on the market. The opportunities for interactivity are endless with the nanoStream Cloud service, and we expect to see ULL live video streaming applications grow significantly in the years to come.
Using nanoStream Cloud, operators are empowered today to support interactive, many-to-many applications, with instant live streaming for any number of streams running 24/7/365 around the globe.