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Amazon’s New Video On Demand Streaming Service Using H.264 At 1.2Mbps

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Yesterday, Amazon launched their new streaming media based service for their newly branded Amazon Video On Demand offering. While there is not too much to review as the service is pretty straight forward, it is interesting to see that Amazon is using H.264 and encoding content in variable bit-rates, up to 1.2Mbps.

The videos are being delivered via Limelight Networks and not from Amazon’s own Amazon Web Services network. While HD quality content is not available today, I’m really interested to see when Amazon adds HD and what bitrate will be used for streaming.

While some users have been commenting that the quality of the stream is not DVD quality, it’s not suppose to be, nor does Amazon set customers expectations incorrectly with any promise of "DVD like quality". It’s a good move on their part as we have seen other content owners compare their video to "DVD quality", when in fact, it isn’t. The one thing I think Amazon does need to improve on is the seek functionality when skipping ahead in the video. For me, it takes too long, more than two or three seconds, for the video to start back up when I skip ahead.