How Does Live Video Streaming Work?

We live in a world where technology determines our every move. Online booking websites have replaced ticket counters, food delivery services have replaced takeaway queues, & live videos have effectively begun to replace blogs & written articles.

As noted in a study done by Livestream, 81 percent of socially active audience now prefer live content over blogs & social media posts.

Thanks to new age technology, gone are the days when you needed bulky, high-end equipments to be able to watch a live event taking place miles away. With the help of live video streaming services, now one just needs a working internet connection & a mobile device, & the world is effectively in your hands.

Why Live Streaming?

live streaming and webcasting

Before we get into the intricacies of live streaming and webcasting solutions & its how-tos, we first need to understand why Live Streaming is gradually becoming so popular.

Live streaming builds trust & confidence

Popular business studies prove that customers tend to trust & intimately connect with a company that makes them feel like a part of their operations. One way how companies can accomplish this is through live streaming their intricate processes, like Patagonia’s massively successful & popular, “Footprints Chronicles” process.

Cost effective way to establish your brand

The advent of live video streaming services have led to the reduction of the costs incurred in securing optical cables, HD televisions & heavy machinery for live broadcasting. Live stream online is a much feasible, cost effective method to connect with your audience & give them glimpses into the inside jobs of your company.

Encourages audience engagement

Once your audience are able to connect with your brand, they are more likely to interact, too. Social media barons swear by the fact that people comment, like, favourite & share more live streaming videos than others. Dunkin Donuts, for instance, received nearly 40,000 views & more than 5000 comments on their first live stream online video, that helped them immensely in offline conversions too.

Entertaining & easy to share

Live video streaming services are well famed for their ease & accessibility. Besides, studies show live streaming is much more entertaining for audience than regular posts & videos, as they feel a more intimate connection when all the action is happening live, rather than otherwise.

When to employ live streaming?

live streaming an event

A live streaming novice might not, initially, be able to understand how & most importantly, when, to use live stream online. For this end, we break down a few situations where live streaming can work wonders.

Customer experience

One of the most challenging aspects of managing brand reputation, is ensuring an efficient, courteous customer service. Live streaming can come in handy during customer interactions & help increase your brand’s ability to connect with customers. Companies can easily deploy live video streaming services for the beta testing of their applications or products, & to create a strong customer bond by walking them through their entire business process.

Important announcements & updates

Companies can very easily announce new products & relevant updates through the medium of Live streaming. This leads to a triple bonus, audience interaction, increased outreach, & customer confidence. New launches can be conducted via a live FAQ session, where customer queries are reverted within short spans.

Live events

Perhaps the best possible occasions to use streaming, are live events. These include conferences, concerts, musical performances, workplace celebrations etc. Live streaming such intimate company occasions are guaranteed to make your audience feel a stronger connect with your brand, & is also likely to make them trust & identify with your company more.

Showcasing work culture & inviting applications

It is also a great way for a company to exhibit its work culture & corporate environment, a crucial step before inviting job applications. Studies show a remarkable increase in online career applications when companies live streamed something like, “A day at our office.”

How does Live Streaming actually work?

Now that we’ve tiptoed around the why’s & if’s of live streaming, it’s time to dive into the “how’s” & understand how live video streaming services actually work & how to live stream online for our good.

How it works is pretty similar to how general day-to-day communications happen.

While we converse, sound travels to our ears in the form of electrical waves, which are then decoded by the brain into varied linguistic contexts for us to be able to understand it.

While streaming live videos, the information is a traveling stream of data from a server, & the decoder is usually a stand-alone player or a web browser embedded plugin. The server, information waves & the decoder cooperate among themselves & make live streaming possible.

The quality of the live streaming also depends on the rate at which the information travels, the input & output frequency of the decoder, & the efficiency of the server.

The process begins with the end user selecting a certain format to be watched on the computer, either .mov, .rm, .wmv, .flv, etc., and with the help of a real-time player such as Real Media or Adobe Flash & an embedded web browser plugin, successfully streams the video.

However, a copy of the video does not exist on the computer & only fragmental data parts are received, which are then immediately discarded as streaming files.

All this is effectively carried out by a streaming server via real-time protocols. The web browser, after receiving the selected file for streaming, sends the request over to the streaming server, which in turn sends the requested file format back to the server using either a real time protocol(RTP), a real-time streaming protocol(RTSP), or a real-time transport control protocol(RTCP).

There is also the option to rent streaming service from a streaming service provider, who will then host your live video session over a cloud.

This entire time, the stand-alone real time player keeps decoding & displaying the stream as the data fragments arrive, & discards all the unnecessary data afterwards.

Live video streaming services are quickly booming & taking up the digital world by storm.

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