Live Streaming for Beginners

Live streaming has become a larger and larger essential in many areas such as education, corporate organizations, houses of worship and more in the past year. While professionals in all of these areas were forced to jump head first into the streaming landscape, many of them are still beginners that were simply forced to adapt.

Streaminglearningcenter.com recently posted a great article detailing how to get started in live streaming. We're going to be taking a look at some highlights from that article, below.

What is Live Streaming?

One of the first things to consider when jumping into live streaming is what exactly is streaming, in the first place.  Plainly, it is a one to many form of communication where participants can see a video in real time.  What sets it apart from prerecorded video is the ability of an audience to interact. 

This makes it perfect for education, houses of worship and more instances throughout a community, which will require audience participation.  

How does Live Streaming Work?

There are several steps to be followed to create a good live stream.  The first of which is to capture a feed from a single camera or a video mixer.  From here, this feed is transcoded and uploaded to a service in the cloud.  Then the video is transcoded into multiple streams to be delivered across multiple platforms. 

Check out this diagram from streaminglearningcenter.com to learn more

Encoders:

One important note when beginning to live stream is the capabilities of the encoder you are using.  Some encoders are switchers, and can pull in multiple cameras and custom graphics.  Meanwhile, some encoders are single camera encoders, meaning that they can ingest video from one single camera, or an external switcher via HDMI, or SDI.  One such encoder is the LiveU Solo, however this encoder gives the user the power of cellular bonding. 

Check out this image from streaminglearningcenter.com below,
to see the LiveU Solo in action.  

Transcoding:

Every live streaming service or product delivers using adaptive bitrate, or ABR technology.  This includes Apple's HTTP live streaming (HLS) or Dynamic Adaptive Steaming over HTTP (DASH) standards.  Every ABR technology uses an encoding ladder to deliver to each viewing platform, all with different speeds.  
Check out this diagram to learn more about Transcoding:

Delivery Via CDNs:

After your stream is transcoded and packaged, it is sent to a content delivery network, or CDN.  A CDN is a specialized service to deliver high bandwidth video files. This includes platforms like YouTube or Facebook, or a custom RTMP.  
Check out this diagram to learn more about CDNs. 

Check out the full article HERE to learn more. 

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