May 14, 2009

Streaming Media


Hostway Team

How many visitors could you bring to your Web site with a live broadcast? A concert, highly anticipated industry conference presentation or groundbreaking product demonstration — all of these connect you with an audience and win their business or raise their awareness. Streaming media runs on a server with advanced software that sends content to the end user's browser while that content is still downloading from the server, enabling live broadcasts over the Internet.

To begin streaming video, you have two options:

  • operate your own streaming server, or
  • sign up for a hosted streaming plan with an Internet service provider.

Consider the Costs

The costs of purchasing, housing and maintaining a server price many businesses out of the first option. A hosted streaming media plan is more realistic for most. Even a hosted plan should only be used if there is a compelling reason to broadcast a live event.

Less expensive options can make a file play while it downloads on the user's computer (so it looks like it's streaming to the user), but the entire file has already been placed on the server. It's called " simple streaming," and it's practically free.

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