Streaming MediaA little Mobile and some Flash StreamingClass 8August 9, 2007
PC Client Content/Download ManagersRequire consumers/users to download a management client on their computerThis application connects to a dedicated service a wholesale intermediaryThey can use ptp strategies to move the content to the consumerThey can act as the DRM policeMonitor and manage the users functions and actions on their computerThey can enforce DRM irrespective of an internet connection
A brief introduction to Mobile Media3G (3rd Generation) Mobile NetworksCapable of delivering vast quantities of data & multimediaTarget is handheld devicesMobile networks are evolving from narrowband, circuit-switched networksThese were used primarily for voice and text
Brief cont.New networks are broadband and utilize packet switchingDeliver broad range of internet-like media services3G is a real paradigm shift for the telecommunications industryOnce place to look is with the sales of camera phones v. digital still cameras
More mobileSeveral 3G networks are up and running in Europe and AsiaPhones there can include:Multiple cameras supporting real-time, person-to-person video callingVideo messagingPlayback of media content (news, sports, music videos, etc.)
A few technological challengesNo agreed to standards. Every company has a better mousetrapIt is the Wild West when it comes to competing technologiesAs opposed to computing where you can assume either MS or Mac, with 3G it is a crap shoot what technology you will need to support, let alone screen size, color depth frame rate and screen direction (vertical or horizontal)MPEG4 is the only video format supported by all phones
You can visit www.3Gpp.org to review what standards have been defined for Mobile
Hardware problemsHardware variability also represents a significant challenge between mobile devicesEvery few months a new crop of phones with new featuresNot just screen display size and color quality changes
More Hardware problemsOperating systemsProcessing powerMemoryMedia format compatibility
Other technical challenges include:Physical movement of a user from one network cell to anotherSignal strength problems on the edge of a networkUsers proximity to a tower will effect data flowNumber of devices operating simultaneously on the same cellPhysical speed that a device is traveling through the cell (e.g. car)
PC Client Content/Download ManagersBit TorrentSonys rootkit/CD copy protection debaclePrivacy Issues / Data miningDigital Media permits intrusion & access on a massively efficient scaleInternational reach of technology subjects networks to multiple cultures and laws (and multiple risks)
PC Client Content/Download ManagersThere is a push for Digital Licenses, separate from the media file and conforms to a standard formatSeparating a universal license from the media has many advantagesIt can accommodate many different licensing scenariosYou dont need to prevent file copyingBecause file is on a server the provider has complete control
Windows Media Rights ServerEnd-to-end DRM system for Windows MediaIt supports a huge variety of security and business model optionsIt delivers WMA and WMV filesWMRM (Windows Media Rights Manager) includes server and client software development kits (SDK) so developers can write unique applications to encrypt files and issue licensesIt does not play well with other platforms and older software
RealSystem Media Commerce SuiteRealNetworks DRM solutionThe Packager encrypts the mediaThe License Server issues content licensesMedia Commerce Upgrade for Real Server tracks the business sideRealSystem Server plug-in enables the service on a media serverLike WMRM it enables a variety of business and distribution models
Flash inside joke
Streaming refers to the normal flow of data as it travels to someone's desktop computer from a server through a network connection. The speed at which data moves is limited by the network connection.
All data moving to a user's machine over a network connection is streamed. What makes a Flash movie stream differently than text, GIF, or JPEG files, for example, is that the data in a Flash movie file is stored sequentially by frame.
Streaming and playback performance
A Flash Player movie plays smoothly if the Flash Player is able to receive data over the network connection is (at minimum) about the same rate that the movie is set to play in frames per second. With progressive file delivery, unlike traditional download-and-play methods of video delivery, however, the file starts playing before it has completely downloaded when you use progressive download.
Progressive v. StreamingWhen comparing progressive download to streaming video, there's really only one benefit to progressive download: You don't need streaming server software to deliver the video. Progressive download video can be served from any normal web server. For example, it can be served off the same machine that is running Apache or IIS and serving your HTML pages.
Progressive limitationsLimited seek and navigation capabilitiesUser-accessible content
When to Use Progressive DownloadProgressive download is a perfect use for hobbyists or websites that have low traffic requirements and only need to deliver short videos.
To ensure that your Flash Player movie plays smoothly from start to finish:
Make sure the size of the data required to display each frame is as small as possible.Make sure the size of the data required to display a series of frames takes no longer to download than it takes to play the series of frames.Test the movie on computers of varying speeds, as Flash movie playback can vary with processor speed.Test your Flash movies on all browsers and platforms that you anticipate visitors will use to view your site.
To play any frame, Flash requires all elements of the frame, such as event sounds, bitmaps, and vector shapes, to be downloaded in their entirety. If the movie reaches a frame that can't be rendered because the data requires more time to download than data in previous frames, playback of the movie stops until the data finishes downloading.
Adobe works with CDN to offer hosted services for delivering on-demand video for Flash PlayerHigh-performance, reliable networks. Built with Adobe Flash Media Server and integrated directly into the delivery, tracking, and reporting infrastructure of the CDN network, Flash Video Streaming Service deliver Flash Video without the hassle of setting up and maintaining your own streaming server hardware and network.
Adobes Flash Video Streaming Service
Flash Streaming ServerTight connection between the server and client, and the server's ability to precisely control and deliver any portion of stream at will, enables the developer to take advantage of a number of very advanced capabilities:Determining the client bandwidth and serving up the correct bit rate stream Measuring and tracking the quality of service of the stream and switching to a lower (or higher) bit rate stream if neededfor example if network congestion increases Automatically generating thumbnails or playing short previews of video clips without having to create separate image or video clips Automatically creating "chapters" (with appropriate thumbnails) that users can navigate to in one very long video without having to break up the video into shorter pieces Switching midstream from one camera angle to another without missing a beat Editing together a full video based on portions of other video clipsfor example, playing the first 10 seconds of Clip 1 followed by the content between the 30 and 40 second marks of Clip 2, followed by the last 20 seconds of Clip 3 Webcasting live or recorded events where everyone sees the same thing at the same time
Bandwidth DetectionDetect the speed at which the client connects and serve up the appropriate bit rate video.Custom Stream DeliveryFlash Media Server captures connection stats about the end-user and enables publishers to deliver a video stream to the end-user based on this information.For example, publishing in Flash 8, but still want to support users using Flash 7 or lower, can serve Flash 8 video to one set of users while serving legacy Flash Player 6 or 7 Video to remaining audience.Dynamic BufferingProgrammatically set the buffer to the precise setting for the fastest start time based on the length and bitrate of the video and the client connection speed. Quality of Service MonitoringTrack the playback experience on the client and correct unforeseen playback problems due to network congestion in real-time.Firewall and Proxy TraversalQuickly test multiple port and protocol combinations to bypass firewalls and proxies and choose the fastest connection.
Live Video Streaming & RecordingCapture and stream live audio and video from any OS recognized camera and microphone source simply by plugging the camera into a USB or Firewire port. Camera APIs enable developers to specify video capture parameters dynamically. Captured video can be broadcast to others in real-time and/or can also be recorded to disc on the server.Demonstration
Multi-User CommunicationsApplications could include media chat rooms, video blogging, video messaging, multi-user games, and more using multi-way, multi-user streaming and remote Shared Object technology for synchronizing data among multiple users.
Advanced SeekEnable viewers to immediately jump to any part of the video regardless of the length of the video or whether it has been downloaded yet.
Multiple Camera AnglesViewer choose from different points of view for deeply engaging, interactive experiences.
SecurityNo exposed URLs and media file locationsControl over information that is exposedNo client cacheUnique transfer protocol limits stream rippingContent delivered via Flash Media Server is wrapped in Macromedia proprietary protocol (RTMP). This is a non-published proprietary format, stream ripping programs do not have the capability to rip media delivered via Flash Media Server (yet). This minimizes the ability for unauthorized programs to capture a digital media stream from Flash Media Server to the Flash Player.
Security 2/2Access ControlSSL DeliverySecure Sockets Layer communication over TCP/IP
Stream Event CaptureWith detailed information about stream event immediately accessible, developers know exactly how and when streaming video is being accessed and by whom.Traditional media delivery capabilities such as progressive download only tell you if a media file was hit or downloaded. Could not tell how much of a video was watched, or if user left the webpage before watching the entire clip.The stream event logging in Flash Media Server enables publishers to see and capture exactly how much video was watched by the end-user.
Edge ServersFor large scale deployments, Edge Origin deployment option for load balancing, failover, redundancy, and clustering.In the past content, configuration files and application logic needed to be replicated to all of the servers. Special server script needed to be created that synchronize the servers.
Deploy multiple Edge Servers to handle the actual traffic while keeping all of their content, server script app logic and reporting at one central Origin Server. The Edge Servers connect to the Origin Server and push and pull content and application logic as needed. This is shown in the illustration below.Edge Server caching for on-demand streamsLive stream splittingData streaming and shared object handlingRoute managementMultiple Processes
Flash TutorialsFlash Developer CenterFlash Media EncoderDRM InformationUnderstanding Streaming FlashStreaming Service Information