The video streaming revolution was first felt among hobbyists and online entertainers, so business leaders often don’t recognize its potential regardless of the industry. But the potential is certainly there, as video streaming can multiply a company’s communication capacity. A single video stream can reach thousands of employees at once with little investment in material and software. That makes it a natural solution for training and announcement purposes.
With video streaming, companies can produce branding and training material for real time delivery. Hundreds of new hires can be introduced to company procedures simultaneously at several different locations. The presenter can be on the other side of the world, but they are still capable of communicating with thousands of people at once. Live video streaming also allows trainers to respond to questions and concerns in the moment, making it a real conversation instead of another one-way form of communication.
Business leaders often overlook the power of conversation in building a brand. Customers appreciate being heard, and when they feel like a brand is speaking directly to them, that builds loyalty. And there’s nothing more direct than a streaming employee engaging with an audience of potential customers. During a stream, the company presenter can answer questions from the audience, explain company products and initiatives, introduce new products and offer incentives to people for engaging with the stream. The only limitation is the company’s creativity, and many brands have greatly enhanced their reputation with smart, transparent communication through video streaming.
Video streaming doesn’t demand a huge investment in capital, especially if the stream is used for branding purposes. In this case, the only equipment needed is a camera, a microphone and an encoder or decoder. Choosing the right product, though, is never that simple. Fortunately, there are several reputable manufacturers dealing in top-notch streaming equipment, so companies have a healthy set of options to choose from.
Some of the Video Streaming Industry’s Best Manufacturers
In everything A/V, it’s quality technology that drives effective solutions. This is also the case with video streaming, where easy to use video streaming equipment is essential to getting consistent, effective output. Some of the manufacturers to pay attention to in this regard, and the products they offer, include:
1. Creston’s DigitalMedia HDR encoder/decoder – Creston offers a bevy of video streaming products, including its popular line of DigitalMedia encoder/decoders. A standout product in the line is the DM-NVX-350. The DM-NVX-350 can serve as a transmitter or receiver, and is capable of ultra HD video with 4:4:4 color sampling and 60 Hz frame rates. It is HDCP 2.2 compliant and comes with two auto-switching HDMI inputs, and a single HDMI output. Finally, on the video side, it offers High Dynamic Range, or HDR10, support.
The DM-NVX-350 offers impressive audio support, as well, with Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, DTS-HD and uncompressed 7.1 linear PCM available. The analog audio port can be configured as a balanced stereo input or output, and audio embedding and de-embedding are possible.
Security, of course, is also a priority, and the DM-NVX-350 is designed with enterprise-grade protection.
2. Extron’s VN-Matrix series – Extron offers highly-respected encoder/decoder combos, and the VN-Matrix series deserves particular mention.
The VN-Matrix 250 is capable of resolutions up to 1920x1200 and 2048x1080 and is ideal for situations where extremely low latency and lossless quality is essential. The VN-Matrix 250 offers real-time production of HDCP-compliant HDMI, RGB and DVI video, and is paired with Extron’s PURE3 codec. The PURE3 codec is wavelet-based and outperforms standards-based compression options in most meaningful ways. It is a strong choice for demanding applications, including live event streaming and remote control applications.
In addition to the PURE3 codec, the VN-Matrix 250 is designed with powerful bit rate management capabilities. The encoder can therefore operate at any level for any application. For wide area networks, the bit rate can be brought down to compensate for reduced bandwidth. When bandwidth is plentiful, the bit rate can be maximized to generate extremely high quality video.
Finally, the VN-Matrix 250 is built with excellent network flexibility. Its error concealment system provides strong resistance to network errors and maintains quality even when the network isn’t managed with QoS functionality. The VN-Matrix 250 can do this without imposing additional latency on the network, so it’s light and effective.
3. VBrick’s Rev – Unlike Creston and Extron, VBrick is almost exclusively focused on video streaming and management solutions. Its Rev line of solutions isn’t a single piece of equipment, but an entire network of technologies that come together to ensure optimal video quality and delivery.
The heart of Rev video streaming is the VBrick distributed media engine, or DME. DMEs act like a media network, taking a stream from a single location and intelligently distributing it to thousands of other DMEs. It can pull streams from other DMEs or third party sources, store video for later perusal, and maintain data storage.
The VBrick DME can pull from a variety of sources, including SIP, TCS, RTP, RTMP and TS. It is also designed with adaptive bit rates, enterprise security encryption and server management, live stream manipulation (transmuxing and transrating) and a self-organizing communication mesh between DMEs.
4. Discover Video’s Streamsie – Discover Video, like VBrick, is mostly focused on providing video streaming solutions to a variety of applications. Its Streamsie encoder is the backbone of the Discover Video brand, and links with the company’s DEVOS video management service to enhance its functionality.
Streamsie is simple to use, with basic stream and record functions that only require a couple button presses to execute. DEVOS does the heavy lifting, with encoder configuration that ensures proper bandwidth use, bitrates and resolution. Streamsie allows for live webinars, complete with an interface for viewers to ask questions and speak to the presenter. Streamsie also comes with watermarking and chroma key capabilities, and can output resolutions up to full HD. Streamsie is designed for companies that want a reliable, simple solution that gets the stream going right away.
Video streaming opens up a world of communication possibilities to companies, and if they have the right tools in place, they can completely revolutionize the way they train and brand.