New devices, including tablets and smartphones, enable television viewers to enjoy live sports and news anytime, anywhere, but latency remains a real issue, causing frustration amongst end-users. In today’s connected world, where viewers are simultaneously checking social media feeds on their smartphones and tablets, a significant delay means that end-users might find out about a game-winning soccer goal from Twitter before actually seeing it. With traditional unicast streaming, buffering several big chunks is necessary for avoiding service interruption with bursty and irregular http traffic. This article will explore the sources of latency in the video delivery chain and explain how multicast technology and managed network capabilities can ensure smooth traffic without requiring massive buffering on the player side to guarantee a good quality of experience (QoE). Using multicast technology and other recent technology innovations, service providers can stream live on connected devices, with ultra-low latency.
There have been increasing experiments with bringing sports action to the home in Virtual Reality 3D. Not only does this add an extra dimension to the excitement, but it highlights the battle between the internet and traditional OTA delivery of entertainment.
There is an unprecedented transformation occurring in the TV platform, from a rigid, linear TV experience to one of flexible fluidity in the OTT and multiscreen worlds. More than half of today’s TV viewers say they now watch their favourite show via an online TV platform. For providers such changes mean the consumer’s needs must be the focal point for new services.
The number of mobile phone video viewers in the United States is expected to reach almost 170 million this year. An additional 10 million may be added by 2020. With such large and increasing audiences, broadcasters are eager to serve these viewers. As streaming live over LTE networks becomes increasingly common, operators that are prepared by using multicast ABR will be the long-term winners.
Two newer technologies are developing that may affect broadcasters, 5G cellular delivery and artificial intelligence (AI). Some experts believe that 5G may develop into a competent OTA program delivery system. Others see 5G as merely another step in boosting cellular delivery speeds. Either way, broadcasters need to understand its capabilities.
It is not just broadcasters and pay TV operators that have struggled to cope with the accelerating momentum behind OTT, because it has been just as challenging for their technology providers.