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Microsoft Gives First Look At Silverlight 2 Functionality

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Last Friday, Scott Guthrie from Microsoft gave out details on his blog about the next version of Silverlight. Scott says that Microsoft will soon release the first public beta of Silverlight 2, which will be a major update from the initial release of Silverlight nearly 7 months ago. Scott says he’ll be doing a bunch of blog posts over the coming weeks talking about Silverlight 2 in more detail. Head over to his blog for the details.

Take A Survey On Encoding/Editing Systems: Win A PlayStation 3

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StreamingMedia.com is conducting a survey on editing systems, encoding software and content workflow. Also of interest are streaming formats and delivery methods. The survey should take no more than two minutes to complete and all respondents will be entered into a drawing for a free PlayStation 3. The winner will be notified on March 15, 2008.

Adobe Gives Details On FMS 3 Benchmarks, Live Streaming and DRM

At StreamingMedia.com, we operate seven different e-mail based discussion lists based on various topics with over 5,000 members. Our lists are free to join and it’s a great place to get answers to your questions from others in the community. One of our most active lists is the "advanced" list where more of the technical discussions take place.

Last week Adobe gave some public info on the benchmarks for the new Flash Media Server 3 and also
addressed the topic of live Flash and DRM. Here are some excerpts on the info they gave out.

Flash Media Server 3 Benchmarks

"The benchmarks for Flash Media Server will be out shortly. I can leak
that the numbers will show a staggering difference from the version 2
of the product. We are seeing 200% on Windows 2003 (SP1; Standard)
increase in both VOD and Live capacity given the same hardware. In
Linux, the numbers are over 300%. The key factor for streaming servers
is the threshold of how much CPU usage someone will run. Similar to
how high you rev the engine to get your speed. We’re seeing a 1Gbps
network card saturated with just 20% CPU on Linux. Given this is our
lab, which we use as a baseline for testing.  RTMPE (the new real-time
Encryption protocol) only adds an addition 10% to the CPU usage."

Flash Player Adoption

"We all know that Flash Player is ubiquitous across both the consumer and enterprise markets. This is the core runtime required to render a video, and connect via RTMP or encrypted RTMPE protocol to FMS. We just published the December 2007 census and Flash Player 9 now enjoys a 97% penetration in mature markets."

Flash Live Quality

"Live video in Flash can be done in 3 ways."
1) Using the Flash player’s live capture feature (SPARK/Nellymoser Codecs); (webcam quality)
2) Using Flash Media Encoder (On2/MP3 Codecs); (good quality at higher bitrates)
3) Using 3rd party partners such as ViewCast, Kulabyte, Digital Rapids and many of the ones that support Ben’s initiatives.   You can see a list of them on the Adobe website.

"Adobe will also be releasing an update to the Flash Media Encoder to support H.264 live streaming in a couple months. This should put aside many of the “quality” concerns you may have. H.264 is higher quality video at much less bitrate."

Addressing Digital Rights Management (DRM) With Flash

"You will be hearing a lot more about this from Adobe over the next few months, but from a streaming point of view, DRM is built on top of 2 key requirements; Encryption of content and Access Control. When you break it down, to protect content from mis-use, you need to protect the bits as they leave the server and before you get the bits, you need to protect the access (i.e. creating a policy)."

"Streaming to Flash resolves both of these requirements WITHOUT a DRM server and WITHOUT any disruption in the playback to download a key. To set the stage, RTMPE and RTMPS (SSL version) encrypts the video bits in real time as they leave the server, and render on the player. There is no client cache (as there would be with a HTTP delivery) so you don’t need to worry about people stealing the bits after they have arrived. There is also a very advanced set of APIs that let you build out your own policy rules for accessing the content. Out of the box, you can protect access to the server using SWF Verification or Domain white listing or even restrict by version of the player. You can build time-out tokens, or anything else you need to protect the delivery channel, and the playback. Because your user is always connected to the server, you have full control over policies for content access."

Experience Does Matter

"Flash / Flex are just one part of the experience process. It’s not just the adoption of the run time that makes Flash Player / AIR the best choice to deliver these experiences. Often times we all focus so much on the adoption rate of Flash player. There is a reason why the proliferation of Flash is so ubiquitous, and there is a reason why Adobe is seeing the fastest adoption of new players then ever before in its history. The reason is from planning to playback – from the person shooting video, or designing the video player experience to the person consuming the video."

"By understanding the workflow of the creative designers and developers and ensuring that their workflow are made as easy as possible using the tools they use every day (Photoshop/Illustrator/Premiere/AfterEffects/Soundbooth….) When you make life easy for people making content, more content will be produced on the platform – it’s really that simple. All the other pieces are in place to ensure content protection, quality and reach so all that effort can be monetized and protected."

Sounds like we will be hearing a lot more news from Adobe about these topics very soon.

JumpTV Selling Their CDN: Shows It’s Too Expensive To Operate Your Own Network

Last week, JumpTV announced that it was looking to sell its content delivery network and would be "refining its strategic focus toward
high-value sports and Hispanic broadcast content." This is a great example of where trying to own and operate your own network specifically for the delivery of video does not makes sense. In the release, JumpTV said "The content delivery network is currently a significant cost center
for the company, and the Company believes its sale will enable it to lower its
ongoing operating costs."

When asked by investors who their biggest competitors are in the
market, some CDNs choose to say "companies who do it themselves". That
may be the case when it comes to the static caching of images and HTML,
but for video, nearly no content owner builds out their own CDN. Yes,
Google and MySpace deliver the majority of their video content
themselves, and AOL does a lot, but how many companies are truly like those three? Certainly not JumpTV.

Delivering video to a mass scale, like JumpTV was doing for over 5,500 live events in the last quarter alone, takes a lot of money, a lot of effort and more resources than most realize. Yes, it is not rocket science anymore, but it is very capital and man-power intensive. For all the investors that think any company with some money can enter the market and easily give the top CDN players a run for their money, it’s not that easy. And when any content delivery network says that "customers doing it themselves" is the bigger competition they face, ask them for what service they are talking about. It’s not for video.

Think about some of the biggest users of video on the web today; MLB, NBA, CNN, MSNBC, FOX, ABC, CBS etc… none of them are building out their own CDNs for video delivery. The CDNs have no major threat from content owners building out their own distribution networks for video delivery.

Akamai, Limelight and The Writers Strike: What It Really Means

Limelight put out earnings this week and once again, many analysts are unfairly comparing Limelight and Akamai numbers and data. Why is it that so many analysts and reporters are willing to make very specific statements about CDN providers, but do so using general terms? Sounds confusing just saying it but I’ll prove my point in a second.

Yes, there is no question that Limelight did not show revenue growth from quarter to quarter and its yearly revenue guidance of ($136M) is a lot less than the pre IPO revenue guidance they gave ($179.2) for 2008. Investors want to see revenue growth quarter to quarter, but to me, who has no vested interest in either Limelight or Akamai’s stock, the number of net new customers by Limelight each quarter continues to grow very well. Continued, long term, steady growth of customers is a good benchmark. Yes, being profitable is important, I get that, but this is not a dash to the finish line. This market is only just getting started and for Limelight, they are in this for the long term. And even without revenue growth quarter to quarter, the next closest competitor to Limelight in terms of CDN revenue for the U.S. has less than 25% of Limelight’s revenue, so its not like anyone is bumping them from the number two spot.

I find it interesting that no one is saying Akamai only had 19 net new customer for the quarter and Limelight had 170? Why is no one comparing that and saying look how good Limelight is doing over Akamai? Because it is not a fair comparison. But that does not stop analysts and others from comparing Limelight’s 15% decrease in the monthly average customer revenue, versus 20% increase by Akamai. That’s suppose to be a fair comparison? What percentage of Akamai’s revenue came from CDN services last quarter? How many new CDN customers did Akamai sign up? We don’t know as Akamai won’t break out those numbers. But did anyone stop to think that Akamai’s CDN business could of been flat for the quarter as well but all of the other higher grossing products they have made up for it?

Limelight lives or dies by two things. It’s CDN product, specifically for video delivery and the media and entertainment customers, which is its core vertical. Akamai offers multiple products not related to video and targets other verticals like enterprise and government. So when reporting numbers, we know exactly what product or service customers are buying. With Akamai, we don’t.

Now some will say that Akamai stated on their call that a) the writers strike did not affect their business and b) they saw significant seasonal strength in media and entertainment. I agree with both of those statements, BUT, they are general statements. Did the writers strike affect Akamai. Absolutely. Doesn’t Akamai have just as many if not more major broadcasters on their network than Limelight? While it did affect them, Akamai answered the question correctly when they said that it did not affect their business. Since Akamai is diversified in their product line, the writers strike had little impact on their revenue overall. But is that then fair to compare that to Limelight since they don’t offer those other products? No.

And as for Akamai’s statement that they, "saw significant seasonal strength in media and entertainment…" I don’t doubt that. But for what product? Why does everyone assume that just because it is a media and entertainment customer that means they are doing video? Media and entertainment customers need other services Akamai offers as well. Why doesn’t anyone question the general statements many companies put out and ask for the data behind it?

And before anyone writes in and says I am taking sides or am defending Limelight, I’m not. Yes, Limelight is a sponsor of the blog but Akamai has also nicely been a sponsor of the blog on multiple occasions. If the roles were reversed, I would still be making the point. It does not matter who the company is to me, it’s the principle of how data is reported and conveyed to the industry and the market.

I probably saw over two dozen articles yesterday alone about Limelight’s earnings. One said, "…it’s
at least as likely that customers are pulling away from Limelight
because of the costly patent lawsuits brought by Akamai and Level 3…" Really? That’s a very specific statement, yet made in a general term with no details. Likely based on what? Customers you spoke to? Something Limelight said? Something you can point to? None of the above. If anything, Limelight’s continued growth of net new customers each quarter says the opposite.

No, I don’t own any shares of Akamai or Limelight. I have never bought, sold or traded their stock ever. And I know some investors are going to say that I am not a financial analyst so what do I know. That may be. But don’t you think that is exactly what is needed in today’s market? People who don’t have any vested interest in public companies questioning what they say and asking for details on the products that make up the numbers? Anyone can look at a spreadsheet and P&L and all of that. But all of those numbers come from the products and every time I listen to a earnings call, nearly all of the questions are about ARPU and lots of financial data. That data comes from the products and services being sold. Why not ask more about them so you can see how the numbers evolved into what they are?

I’m sure some will say, why the hell do I care about this so much? Why am I always ranting about apples to apples comparison when I have no vested interest in the stock of any of these companies? The answer is simple. I want this industry to grow. I have been in this market for almost 15 years and I want to see it grow for another 15. In order to do this education, data, metrics and examples are the_best way that is going to happen. Maybe I am a fool for wanting companies and Wall Street to be more straight forward with info, ask the right questions and provide real data. I know when it comes down to it it’s all about politics and the companies decide what data they put out in the market and what "perception" they want the industry to have.

My relative Sam Rayburn, former Speaker of the House said it best with the quote of "you can never remove politics from politics". That’s what this industry feels like to me sometimes, politics.

AP Article: How Internet Video Is Clogging the Pipes

I can’t figure out why we still have to read an article every few months talking about how online video is clogging the Internet. Last week the AP published an article titled "How Internet Video Is Clogging the Pipes". It’s basis for the argument is that ISPs like Comcast and Time Warner Cable are shaping traffic due to file sharing. Ok, but what does that have to do with online video? Sharing files that may or may not contain video content is not "online video". Sharing a file via a download from one user to another does not involve the playback of any video online, it’s played back locally from the users computer.

Yet, after saying that file sharing is the problem, the article then says that "Internet use keeps climbing, with video being the big driver in recent years. Google Inc.’s YouTube, which started up in 2005, already accounts for about 10 percent of Internet traffic." First, is there anyone out there besides the company who produced that report that believes that YouTube accounts for 10% of all traffic passed on the Internet? And second, how can you compare file sharing to YouTube? They are two different types of traffic. File sharing is usually very large files and most times at very high quality. YouTube is short form content at very low quality.

My point is that we keep having to read articles every few months about how online video is supposedly breaking, clogging, or filling the pipes to the point that the Internet is going to come to a halt. There is no data anywhere to back this up. Yes, video traffic has grown and continues to each year, but it has been doing that for the past 10+ years. Online video is not clogging the Internet and I have yet to see anyone with any real data to back up the theory that online video is going to fill up all of the capacity the Internet has to offer.

More VC Money Coming To CDNs and P2P Networks

With over 30 CDN and P2P providers in the market today (www.cdnlist.com), you’d think the VC money would stop flowing to content distribution networks, but it’s not. Over the first half of this I expect we’ll see at least three more companies who are expected to announce funding. Looking at my list of 30+ providers, there is almost no company left on the list that hasn’t raised money. I can’t remember a time in the CDN market, even dating back to 1999, when nearly every company in the CDN industry all raised capital within nearly 12 months of each other.

We’ve seen Limelight Networks go public and EdgeCast, CacheLogic, CDNetworks, Grid Networks, BitTorrent, ChinaCache, Move Networks, Itivia, Rawflow and Rinera Networks all raise money within about the past 12 months. I expect the next round of funding announcements this year to come from Panther Express, Pando Networks and BitGravity and if that happens, nearly every company on the list will have raised money or is a publicly traded company.

This worries me. While it is great for the industry right now, over time, the market can’t sustain 30+ providers. I fear that 18-24 months from now we’re going to see quite a consolidation in the CDN market and only about half the providers will be left standing. The CDN market keeps going in the same cycle every couple of years. In 1998 there were about half a dozen CDNs. In 2001 that number surged to a few dozen. Then in 2004 we were back down to about six providers, and three years later, back up to a few dozen. It’s a roller coaster ride for the CDN market and I really hope that the CDN and P2P providers are taking note of why companies failed in the past, where they went wrong and are aware of how not to repeat the same mistakes made in the market in years past.

SM East Conference: Advance Program Live, Speakers Wanted

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The advance program for the Streaming Media East conference and exhibition taking place May 19-21st in NYC is now available for download.

We’ll have over 100 speakers and 30 sessions, many of which will be interactive with live demos, presentations and how-to sessions. Many shows put six or seven speakers on a session or fill the agenda with vendor sales pitches. At Streaming Media East, nearly 75% of our speakers are customers who are buying and deploying these services and products today.

Here is the list of all the session names and full descriptions of each session can be found in the PDF:

  • How Old Media Is Embracing Online Video and New Media
  • Reinventing The Ad Model Through Discovery And Targeting
  • Using Adobe Media Server To Deliver Live And On-Demand Video
  • Mergers and Acquisitions: Wall Street’s View
  • Monetizing And Aggregating Niche Video Content
  • Live Broadcasting Over Mobile And Wi-Fi Networks
  • The H.264 Convergence
  • Comparing and Using Online Video Codecs
  • Online Video: Should Content Creators Get a Cut?
  • Effective Advertising Models For Short-form Video Marketing
  • Codec Comparison: VP6, H.264, And Windows Media
  • CDN Pricing: The Going Rate For Video Delivery
  • Lifecasting: The New Broadcasting Platform
  • Planning, Building, and Launching a Successful Podcast
  • P2Ps Role In Delivering Online Video
  • New Advertising Platforms and Networks
  • Creating And Promoting Amateur And Viral Videos
  • Best Practices in Enterprise Streaming for Communications and Learning
  • Ad Networks Vs. Branded Video Sites
  • Deploying On-Demand and Live Media Experiences with Microsoft Silverlight
  • Entertainment Devices: How TiVo, Xbox, and iPhone’s Are Changing Content Consumption
  • Adobe Media Player: Creating, Delivering, and Monetizing Branded Video
  • User-Generated Video in Education
  • Delivering Media For Microsoft Silverlight With Windows Server 2008
  • Tools And Best Practices For The Enterprise Streaming Media Department
  • Beyond The Classroom: Reaching A Global And Mobile Audience With Elearning
  • Independent Content: Creating New Revenue Streams
  • Planning & Executing Successful Webcasts
  • Evaluating and Choosing The Right Methods Of Video Delivery

Nearly 65% of the speakers have already been confirmed and will begin going on the website next week. While the call for speakers closed last month, over the coming weeks I will be posting some open speaking spots I have for some very specific sessions. Your best way to stay up to date is to sign up to the blog in your RSS reader so you don’t miss out on potential speaking opportunities.

Yahoo! Buys Maven Networks: Revenue Multiple Too High

As I’m sure you’ve read by now, Yahoo! announced earlier in the week it had acquired Maven Networks for approximately $160 million. While I see some of the synergy of the deal, I think Yahoo! paid too much. Based on the price tag, Yahoo! paid about 11x the sales revenue that Maven had in 2007. It’s a good deal for Maven shareholders, but for Yahoo!, that’s a high evaluation in my eyes in today’s market.

Clearly, Yahoo! bought Maven for their technology platform and IP, but at some point, you have to also look at the buy vs. build numbers. Acquiring Maven gives Yahoo! a platform today, as opposed to them having to build one themselves, but at what cost? Considering the state of the rest of Yahoo! business, selling a software video platform is very different than the way Yahoo! has sold everything else for years. And not really knowing what Yahoo! strategy is as a whole moving forward casts doubt on what will truly become of a Maven/Yahoo! integration.

While it sounds like the product will still be branded under the Maven name, Yahoo! should re-brand this immediately and bring it under the Yahoo! brand. With the sate of flux that Yahoo! is in as a company, I think it needs to do everything it can to put forth one clear brand, strategy and core set of products. I think over time the Maven platform could be a good core product for Yahoo!, but only time will tell how successful the integration will be and whether or not Yahoo! sticks to the set of current products offerings they have in the market today. In my eyes, it’s hard to for Yahoo! to say to the market that it is dedicated to any product platform, while at the same time laying off 1,000 employees. How much will Yahoo! truly support the Maven platform with additional dev work and new products features and functionality?

One Year And Nearly 400 Posts Later

It’s been one year to the day since I started this blog and put up my first post. Nearly 400 posts later it’s amazing how many topics the industry is talking about, what the hot topics are today and how much of what we were taking about a year ago, or eight years ago, is once again coming full-circle.

My thanks to the loyal readers and subscribers of the blog and all the sponsors who enable me to be able to sit down and write something nearly everyday. Support from sponsors has been overwhelming and I hope that in their eyes I am providing some good thought-provoking content via the blog for discussion.

My thanks to some of the newest blog sponsors: EdgeCast, Skytide, Microsoft, Internap, Adobe and to my long running sponsors of Limelight Networks, Tremor Media, Ignite Technologies, Ortiva Wireless and many of the other companies who have sponsored the blog.

Next month, I’ll be doing some re-design of the blog layout to make things a bit easier to read, less clutter, and will be moving over to standard ad sizes.

Thanks again for everyone’s support and as always, if you have ideas for the blog, if there are topics you want me to write more about, I am always open to feedback, good or bad.

62% Of CDN Customers Surveyed Say Pricing Flat Year Over Year

I’ve been taking a look at some of the preliminary data that we have been collecting from our CDN survey and we’ve already got some great data points. While I expect a few thousand respondents over the course of a month, after a few days we already have over five hundred customers who have filled it out.

As Akamai’s Q4 earnings from last night showed, much of the "pricing war" talk in the industry by analysts is overblown. Yes, there is some competition, especially when it comes to the largest customers, but for the most part, the "price war" is not as bad as analysts make it out to be and this data point below seems to reinforce that idea.

One of the questions in the survey is: How would you assess the pricing of your current CDN contract(s) versus your last CDN contract?

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62% of those who have been surveyed stated their pricing was flat year over year. That point by itself is not enough as you really need to know what kind of volume those who fill out the survey are doing, but we’re collecting that data as well and nearly half of those surveyed are doing over 50TB of transfer a month, so it’s good sized customers.

The point is that not every customer is getting rock-bottom pricing and not every customer knows what price they should be asking for. If they did, we’d be seeing lower prices in the market more than we are, but in many cases, customers who already think they are getting a good price aren’t trying to get the CDNs to lower pricing even more, unless the customer is willing to commit to more traffic, more revenue, or more services.

Take A 2-Minute CDN Survey: Win A Free iPhone!

CDN CacheLogic Rebrands, Changes Company Name To Velocix

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This evening, UK based content delivery network CacheLogic re-launched their company website and changed their name to Velocix. Some may be familiar with the Velocix name already as it was previously used by the company as part of their product offering branding. This comes hot on the heels of the company closing $25 million last month.

Breaking News: Court Throws Out Two Patents In Akamai/Limelight Patent Case

While I don’t have all the details yet, within the past hour, the court has issued a preliminary ruling throwing out two of the three patents named in the Akamai suit. I’m being told that only the 703 patent will be going to court. I’ll post more details as I get them. I expect we’ll see an announcement tonight.

Limelight put out a press release a few hours after this post. You can read it here.

Level 3 Winning Video CDN Business, But Not On Price

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In October of last year, Level 3 announced that it would offer their content delivery services for video for the same price that it was charging for transit. Many in the industry incorrectly saw this as Level 3 saying they were undercutting other CDNs in the market and entering the industry as the low-cost leader, which is not the case.

If I remember correctly, Level 3 has over 2,000 customers for its IP transit services. It’s only natural for them to roll out a pricing plan that they can use to target current customers buying other products like transit. But instead of many seeing it for just that, too many in the industry took it as a sign that Level 3 started a "price war" amongst the CDNs. For all those who have written about Level 3’s pricing and a price war, why is it that none of them that I have seen have ever mentioned any real numbers of what Level 3 charges? Where is the data behind this Level 3 "price war" that so many talk about? How come no one will give an example of what Level 3 is actually charging? And if you aren’t a Level 3 customer for IP transit services, their new pricing model gives you no indication of what they charge for CDN services without transit. Too many people want to make this more complicated than it is and want to talk to the "perception" of a Level 3 price war instead of finding out what they are actually charging for content delivery.

I’ve seen a bunch of Level 3 quotes and RFP responses and Level 3 is not undercutting the other CDNs in the industry just to win business. They are not the most expensive in the industry, nor are they the cheapest. From what I have seen, on large volume deals (over 50TB), Level 3 is a few cents more per GB delivered on average. But of the deals I hear Level 3 winning, like the one they announced yesterday with the Democratic National Convention, Level 3 is winning business where it involves more than just content delivery. In many cases it involves back-haul, transit, VYVX services, co-location and other products. Level 3’s approach to the market is that they will gladly take on the customers who need high-volume delivery and commoditized CDN but they are really targeting the more complex business that involves more than just the CDN product. It’s the same marketing angle and approach to the market that Internap is using and Level 3 and Internap are more similar in their services offered than Level 3 is to Limelight or Akamai.

I expect we will see more announcements about customer wins by Level 3 like the one from yesterday that involve multiple products and services outside of CDN. Is that to say that companies like Level 3 and Internap are eating into the market share of Limelight, Akamai and others? In most cases no, as they are all going after a core group of different customers with different needs. There is no CDN on the market today that is a perfect fit for every customers needs. Yes, all the CDNs are competing on some of the very commoditized business, but most of them are now distinguishing themselves by going after different sized customers, in different verticals, with different solutions. They have all become a lot more focused in knowing who they should target and who they shouldn’t. A few years back, CDNs tried to be everything to every customer. Today, the majority of them are very good as knowing what business not to go after.

I’ll be putting out more CDN pricing data over the next 30 days as we are collecting CDN data from customers via this survey. We’ve already had a few hundred CDN customers fill it out and I expect a few thousand over the next couple weeks.

Take A 2-Minute CDN Survey: Win A Free iPhone!

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StreamingMedia.com is conducting primary research in the area of content delivery network pricing and trends. This survey should take no more than two minutes to complete and all respondents will be entered into a drawing for a free Apple iPhone.

Highlights of the survey results will be available for free to anyone who completes the survey. The survey will include information on the cost of video delivery services, format and bitrate trends, P2P adoption and other content delivery specifics.

Content Owners See Their Video Traffic Growing 2-4x Over Last Year

I talk to a lot of content owners large and small and no matter what subject we are discussing, I always ask them for their predictions on their traffic growth for 2008. While many of them share their numbers with me but don’t allow me to make them public, the vast majority of content owners are telling me that they expect to deliver 2-4x more bits this year when compared with 2007. For most of them, that does not take into account the fact that this year, many content owners are bumping up their encoding bitrates from 300Kbps to 500-750Kbps. Taking that into consideration, with increased bitrates they could see their traffic growing from 4-8x over last year.

In most cases, nearly 100% of this content is being delivered via content delivery networks, so it’s the CDNs who really make out from this growth. But the real question is while the number of bits goes up, does the price per GB delivered come down to the point of where the volume really does not make up for the reduced price? From what I can tell, even if a content owner increases their traffic by 4x over last year, the typical price break they are going to receive is somewhere around 35%. On a 200TB a month commit, a customer who is paying say $0.20 per GB delivered now, is going to be paying on average around $0.13 per GB delivered for 1000TB a month. Now that’s not what ever content owner is paying, some pay more, some less, but if we use that as an average, CDNs should still see higher overall revenue based on increased volume.

Now for larger deals, that may not be the case. For a content owner who does 500TB a month today and grows to 2000TB a month this year, I expect they will see close to a 50% reduction in price based on the additional volume. So for some of the really large customers, increased bits delivered may not equate to more revenue for CDNs. For larger customers it may cancel it out. Bottom line, content owners are expecting to deliver a lot more bits this year and don’t see the recession cutting back on their growth or spending.

Announcing New Awards Program: Streaming Media All-Stars

In the April/May issue of Streaming Media magazine, we’ll be announcing the first annual Streaming Media All-Stars—the 25 people who’ve done the most to advance, evangelize, and expand online video and audio—and we want you to help us pick the team. StreamingMedia.com’s Editor Eric Schumacher-Rasmussen is leading the awards program and needs your help.

We’re looking for both familiar faces and unsung heroes. We’re looking for visionaries and tough-minded realists, for industry veterans and recent disruptors. However you describe them, they’re the people who’ve made this industry what it is, whether their contribution has come in the way of new technology, innovative delivery, or a whole new way of looking at online video and audio.

Because this is the inaugural Streaming Media All-Star team, we’ll be honoring 25 people who’ve had the most impact on streaming media over the last 10 years. We know there are more than 25 individuals, so in the future, we’ll focus primarily on current movers and shakers, but now is the time to acknowledge the people who are of true historic importance. While I am not leading the awards program, it is my hope that we will acknowledge those who don’t normally get a lot of credit or who’s credit usually goes to the CEO or executive in the company, even when it was the person in the trenches who really did the work. This is not about giving out an award to whomever has the best title or the most well known, but rather those who have made a real impact on the industry and have helped move our industry forward.

The Streaming Media editorial staff will put together the final All-Star team roster in time for NAB and Streaming Media East 2008. But we can’t do it alone, so we’re looking for nominations from you.

Just click here and enter the name of your All-Star nominee and a short description of why you think he or she deserves recognition.

The cutoff date for nominations will be February 11. No nominations will be accepted after 11:59 p.m., February 11, 2008. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to email Eric at awards@streamingmedia.com

Looking To Hire Conference Chair For The Streaming Media Europe Show

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StreamingMedia.com is looking to hire someone who is interested in being the conference chair for the Streaming Media Europe show taking place October 15-17th in London. With all of the other shows I am working on in the U.S. and the growth of our business overall, I won’t be able to chair the European show this year.

We are looking for a part-time person who is willing to work with me on the program but will primarily take the lead in organizing the session topics, selecting speakers and being the conference chair on-site during the three days of the show. You must be located in or near the UK and must have experience in planning conferences and/or have a good working knowledge of the online video industry.

This is part-time work that can be done over many months and other than a few specific deadlines, is the kind of work someone who is organized could accomplish quickly. This is also a tremendous opportunity for the right person who wants to have a real impact on the European online video market and wants to use this event to help establish themselves as a thought leader in the industry. You get to decide how the industry is educated and brand yourself as someone who is tied directly into the space.

If you are interested, please contact me ASAP with your resume and an outline of your experience in the industry as it pertains to conference planning. We will be scheduling some in-person meetings next month in London to talk to those who may be interested. 

Updated List Of CDN Providers For Video Delivery

Back in September, I posted a list of CDN providers for video delivery and since that post, more providers continue to enter the market. Today, I am tracking over 30 providers for online video delivery (which can now easily be found at www.cdnlist.com) be it via streaming, progressive download, P2P or hybrid solutions.

The last time I made a list like this I got all sorts of angry comments
from many of the companies on the list about me unfairly comparing
their company to another company. No where in this post am I comparing
any company, product, revenue, size, geographic reach, formats
supported etc…. This is simply a list of the providers I am tracking
in the market who offer video delivery services.

Every provider has
different strengths and weakness all based on many different needs of a
specific customer. And before I get a million questions about why
Amazon is not on this list, Amazon’s S3 offering does not count as a CDN in my eyes. Also, this list is based on my interpretation of what a "CDN" is. Many people have different takes and opinions on what makes a CDN and these days, the term "CDN" is very broad.

Maybe you think differently than I do on what classifies a CDN and would have a different list than I do. But based on what I think a CDN for video is, in alphabetical order these are the delivery networks I track in the industry

Industry Executives On The Move

A quick round-up of some of the latest hiring’s in the online video industry:

  • DeWayne Nelon, former CEO at Ortiva Wireless is now the CEO at Avot Media.
  • Paul Alfieri, formerly from Motorola is now the head of Worldwide Corporate Communications for Limelight Networks.
  • Rick Holtman, formerly from the ROO Group, is now the VP of sales for NeuLion.
  • G Gooder, formerly from The FeedRoom is now the Director of Business Development at Brightcove.
  • Duane Sulo, formerly from Mirror Image is now the Director of East Coast sales for EdgeCast.
  • Steve Chung, former VP of Business Development at CDNetworks, has now been promoted to the CSO and EVP of Global Markets.

If you are looking for a new position, have taken a new job or are a company that has a job opening, let me know. In many cases I will highlight it here on the blog – free of charge.