Streaming Video on Websites

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What is Video Streaming?

Video streaming is content sent in compressed form over the Internet and displayed by the viewer in real time. With video streaming a Web user does not have to wait to download a file to play it. Instead, the media is sent in a continuous stream of data and is played as it arrives. The user needs a player, which is a special program that un-compresses and sends video data to the display and audio data to speakers. A player can be either an integral part of a browser or downloaded from the software maker's web site.

Video streaming is usually sent from prerecorded video files, but can be distributed as part of a live broadcast "feed." In a live broadcast, the video signal is converted into a compressed digital signal and transmitted from a special Web server that is able to do multicast, sending the same file to multiple users at the same time.

Pros and cons of video streaming


  • It can be very engaging
  • You are reaching out to a real-time audience who have opted-in to watch
  • You can control your message
  • you could potentially generate a bigger audience
  • It could possibly open opprotunities for revenue
  • Piracy protection. Streaming video makes it harder to copy.


  • You have to understand your audience and determine whether they would benefit from the live-streamed content you want to provide.
  • There is a cost factor that needs to be taken into account.
  • There are technological factors that need to be taken into consideration, like what platform to use, does that platform need encoding, can your audience access the content on a mobile device etc.
  • Bandwith use. Users with slower connections may experience issues with playback and/or poor quality
  • Varying quality across diffrent browsers each browser handles playback diffrently which means the same video may look good in one browser and horrible in another.

Cost of Video streaming?

Costs mount quickly with streaming video. Expensive camera equipment and high-end computer equipment are needed to transmit the feed. In addition, securing enough bandwidth to support a live broadcast typically requires the services of an Internet service provider (ISP). While potentially less expensive than managing the entire process in-house, the costs for bandwidth usage can still run high.

Factors of cost

Viewing Time

The longer you broadcast, the more it costs, as you would expect.

Number of Viewing Minutes

This is the measurement scale of how many people will watch the broadcast but also how much of it, on average, they will watch. There is a big difference between 50 viewers watching all of a 1 hour broadcast and 1000 viewers watching 5 minutes of a 1 hour broadcast. Two things can help you with this.

Image Quality

It totally depends on image quality. Generally the lowest quality you would use for video is 300 Kbps which will look good in a small window but not so good on a full screen. The most common quality is 800 Kbps which whilst not quite up to the standard of a DVD is really pretty good. Anything above this might not be appreciated by many viewers because of limited internet connection.

Platform Cost

Features DaCast Livestream Ustream
Entry Level Price $19/month $42/month $99/month
Ad Free Veiwer Hours 300hrs Unlimited 100hrs
Storage 20gb Unlimited 50gb
# of channels Unlimited 1 1
Analytics Included From $199/month From $499/month
Support Email Email Phone
Password Protection Included From $799/month Included