Video Hosting Services
Video hosting is radically different from standard web hosting. This is not obvious to most customers, but it's critical to making a good impression on your viewers. So let's demystify it.
- Although you already have a website - it is most likely not going to help you deliver high-quality video to your viewers.
- The key to delivering high-quality video is a technology known as 'streaming'. Streaming delivers video data in packets rather than as a single large file, and the stream of packets is adjusted according to realtime network conditions to optimise the viewing experience.
- Streaming also protects your intellectual property because (unlike web hosting or free services like Youtube) your video files are never downloaded on viewers' machines.
- Deploying your own streaming media server is also not a guarantee that your viewers will enjoy high-quality video. In fact a single media server can only serve a few hundred viewers located relatively 'nearby', say within your enterprise or inside your own country.
- On the other hand, when a large number of streaming servers are organised into a distribution network - called a content delivery network or CDN - it can handle audiences of almost any size from almost any location around the globe.
We provide video hosting in partnership with NetroMedia, a global CDN which is purpose-built for
Internet video streaming. NetroMedia has its headquarters in Canada and media servers located in many
locations throughout the globe. Their network matrix is shown below.>
NetroMedia is connected to Bell, Telus, Shaw, Global Crossing, Savvis, Time Warner, Level3, AboveNet,
UUNet, ATT, Deutsche Telekom, NTT/Verio, Telefonica and Internap global bandwidth trunk lines.
As part of a presentation recording, webcast or other video project, we will host your video for previewing purposes at no cost. Once the deliverables are accepted, we will begin a formal contract if hosting is required. We can also provide pure hosting, that is, for customers who are not using our production services.You pay just
Hosting fees are based on data traffic and are billable monthly in advance. Data traffic is measured in Gigabytes per month, from US$ 5-15 per GB based on volume. If you can estimate the average bitrate and viewing time, you can convert this to traffic. We will offer you one of several packages that meets your traffic needs and includes sufficient storage for your physical files. An entry package would provide several hundred viewing hours for just a few hundred dollars monthly.
Hosting comes with a storage allowance but you are not charged for this storage. In practice this means that as long as there is occasional demand for older videos you can just leave them online. You simply estimate monthly usage according to the average traffic for new videos and evergreen programmes and budget accordingly. You can upload new content every month without the need to be miserly about storage, thus building your audience over time.
We also do not charge for web hosting which is incidental to our production services. For example, if we produce an entry page and custom player for your webcast, these will be hosted on our web servers at no charge. Or you can host them if you prefer.
Media Types and Capacity
We prefer Windows Media as a production tool, but for video hosting we also support other media types including Flash Video and Quicktime. We can also stream ShoutCast audio (popular with radio stations) and stream to mobile and PDA devices using MPEG4 format.
As a result of using NetroMedia's CDN infrastructure, which was built to handle concerts, political campaigns and other large-scale events, there is practically no limit to the size of the audience we can handle. There is no need for a fixed cap on the number of viewers and we will normally wave excess usage charges in favor of increasing the package in subsequent months. We make that commitment to grow with you.
We can provide detailed traffic analysis to help you identify how many viewers you have and how long they are watching. As in most reporting packages, we can provide a breakdown by geography or time period. If you are hosting different types of content (eg- Windows Media and Flash Video) we can provide an analysis of which format is more popular with your viewers.
With our video hosting, you get our 100% uptime stream guarantee and your audience receives superior audio, clearer video and faster buffering. For large accounts we will provide a detailed service level agreement.