Skyfire: Companies Need To Do a Better Job Streaming Mobile VideoDecember 16, 2011
by Kelly Hodgkins
Mobile video is about to explode in the upcoming year. According to Cisco, video accounts for 52 percent of all mobile data and will rise to 66 percent by 2013. With video conferencing, YouTube and Netflix, this figure isn’t surprising. What is surprising is that companies are doing remarkably little to help wireless carriers balance this consumption. Without some balance, this increase in data threatens to choke our mobile broadband connection in the upcoming years.
Carriers are trying to control consumption with metered data plans that restrict usage to 2 GB per month, but according to a recent Skyfire report, there’s another way. Companies can use adaptive bit rate technology (ABR) which streams video at various quality settings depending on the connection. ABR is an easy to way to adjust the video output to the speed of the connection and not try to push too much data through the pipes.
Skyfire surveyed online video sites and found only 17 percent of online video publishers and 26 percent of iPhone apps use adaptive bit rate technology (ABR). It’s an easy solution to manage video streaming, but expensive which is why companies have been slow to adopt it. ABR is not only useful for carriers, it’ll help end users, too. The video quality will adapt to meet your connection, so there are no pauses caused by video buffering. To learn more about this issue, you can read the entire Skyfire report below.