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Akamai’s new tech services to offer uninterrupted live streaming of TV channels
MUMBAI: Leading cloud delivery platform Akamai Technologies has launched a new version of Media Services Live to bring the consistency and reliability of broadcast television to the Internet.
The new version of Akamai’s Media Services Live adds liveOrigin capabilities to address the challenges of streaming always-on linear television channels. It has been designed to support over-the-top (OTT) video service providers, broadcasters and telcos that are operating or launching full-time TV channels online.
Media Services Live includes four new components, together known as liveOrigin, that operate in concert to support the same level of quality for linear video streaming that is expected of traditional broadcast television:
Broadcast-Quality Ingestion: The transfer of video from its origination point to the delivery network is a crucial step in linear streaming. Akamai has built a highly distributed ingestion network using the company’s proven mapping technology to match encoders to the most optimal entry point, creating a system that can automatically route content to different entry points with no viewer impact if the connection is interrupted. Those capabilities are complemented with ingest acceleration, based on Akamai’s Media Acceleration technology, to support throughput of higher bit rates and also mitigate and circumvent poor network connectivity.
Low Latency: Akamai is introducing 10-second latency as part of Media Services Live, addressing the need for online and broadcast content to play back for viewers near-simultaneously. Particularly important for broadcasters and live sports and news providers, the feature dramatically reduces what has traditionally been a 30-second-or-more delay between broadcast signals and online streams.
Self-Healing Network: Akamai has incorporated multiple layers of redundancy into Media Services Live in which content is replicated to multiple locations across the network.
Monitoring & Reporting: Akamai’s new Media Services Live includes near real-time reporting that affords customers critical insights into content and ingest performance. The capabilities replace the minutiae and time inherent to pouring over log files with at-a-glance visualisations of critical, stream-level metrics such as average bitrate, latency, packet loss and error rate among others. Users can set custom thresholds for key metrics that activate alerts when exceeded.
“Akamai Media Services Live is designed from the ground up explicitly to span the chasm between live streaming and broadcast television. Media Services Live is a solution that’s dedicated and optimised to support the unique and rigorous demands of delivering live and linear 24/7 channels online with features and performance capabilities that simply are not available from commodity storage and delivery services,” said Akamai VP, Media Products and Operations Michael Fay.
“As OTT operators and broadcasters build their online businesses and expand their programming, linear channels and the related viewing experience is playing a key role in the ability to differentiate services. Having a platform that is able to support the quality of experience necessary to attract and keep customers will be critical as broadcast TV continues its shift online.”