Cost Formation Factors for a Video Streaming Platform

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What is the cost of a video streaming solution?

How can I estimate and quote a VOD and live streaming app?

What are the price formation factors of a pay-per-view platform?

Ok, you will find the answers to these and other questions below. But first let’s set the scene.

To have a general idea about the infrastructure you need, you should decide on whether you will stream only prerecorded video content (VOD, TVOD, AVOD) or you will also stream live video (live events).

Below we cover both scenarios.

VOD, TVOD, AVOD

Before buying or developing a video on demand (VOD) platform or transactional video on demand (TVOD) solution - you must consider these super high-level features: content management, content storage and access, subscribers’ management, your look & feel preferences for the applications (web, iOS, Android, back-end).

Content Management System (CMS)

  • Do you already have CMS in use? If you already have a website, or other channel where you stream your content, it is recommended that you consider its pros and cons and decide if you will be able to scale your services through it. Make sure you know if you’d like to have new application for video on demand or you prefer to stick to the existing infrastructure and its modules.
  • How many videos you have for the VOD platform? For the underlying infrastructure it matters if you are about to stream 1 petabyte of prerecorded video content, or there are only 500 tutorials that you’d like to sell with a subscription plan. Here also comes the question of scalability – what your expectations are with respect to viewers’ growth and, for example, what would be the season’s trends.

  • How many videos are uploaded daily/weekly/monthly? These numbers will help us recommend you the best approach for handling video and audience volumes. The set-up handling 1 video upload per week would considerably vary from the set-up handling 1,000 videos per week. The volumes of video content would also define the search features embedded in the streaming platform. Different rules can be applied for TV channels - search can be enabled and full text search can be performed inside the channel or being included in the cross-channel search available in mobile app, enable for web publishing, paywalls, geo-locations, language preferences, content sorting, etc.
  • Number of viewers. The range of expected viewers count will help in defining the VOD and infrastructure traffic. You could have simultaneous viewers ranging from 500 – for a video tutorial app – to 15M for a TV streaming application. In any case it is valuable to forecast and/or analyze this data.
  • Do you need access control capability? If it is only you who will have access to the back-end of the platform, for subscribers’ management and video upload, there is no need for access control capability. But if you have a team of administrators, who are taking care of the content management, then you need access control management.

Pricing model. Monetization features allow you to sell video content. Our platform provides in-app purchase, including subscription-based VOD through various plan types. The monetization model could also be:

  • Free
  • Pay per View (PPV) is a model where subscribers purchase an event to view. This model is often used for live art performances, concerts, sport events, boxing, etc.
  • Ad-supported Video on demand (AVOD) is a model where the viewer is not charged for the video service, but advertisements are included in the viewing experience.

In case you are planning to deliver the video content primarily via iOS and Android applications, you should consider if your pricing model is:

  • fixed and rarely changed or
  • it is dynamic.

This would help define how to best customize the functionality, so that it supports regular changes in the pricing policy and different subscription plans, discounts, etc.

Content Access

  • Where is the current service hosted? You should bear in mind that depending on where the video content is stored, and the back-end system is running, there can be monthly charges for the hosting and for the traffic.
  • Viewers, in terms of geographical location. Content store and access also depend on the geographical distribution of the viewers - where is the majority of your audience situated.
  • Bianor helps you deliver content to your audience through VOD and live streaming. Our custom-developed platform ingests content from any video source, including YouTube, syndicated content or raw video on a hard drive. Your content reaches web, mobile, Apple TV, XBOX, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and more than 7K models of smart TVs.

User Management

  • Is there a need for registration, login? If your customers and viewers subscribe to your current service or website, for example with an email, then you need a registration for your video streaming app as well. Larger TV services need fully-fledged secure module for user management.
  • Do you need to collect customers information? For marketing and remarketing purpose, you might also need a dedicated module, that collects user information.
  • Bianor’s custom solutions provide advanced tools for easy discovery of relevant content from the moment the user first interacts with the mobile app. It collects data from multiple sources to build a complete user profile. These sources include demographics data and personal interests from Facebook, explicit choice of interests during onboarding process, behavioral data points like watched type of content (news, movies, series, clips, live events, etc.), what videos are watched, from which genres, etc. The collected data then is used as input for building personal recommendations lists organized by topics, genres, what other users watched.

Look and Feel Preferences

  • Design. If there are other similar solutions that have design you like, it would be good to know. If you already have created a design we should apply and stick to, it would be helpful to have clear vision on User Interface (UI) questions.
  • Will you display ads from Ads provider? If you plan to display advertisements, for example services like Google AdWords, this should be considered.
  • Bianor provides intuitive three steps Video Playback and Control. It is basically push-to-play of any video content available on the platform. It is as easy as that: 1. Tap on a video content, 2. Choose a target screen (mobile, TV, or any other capable device), 3. Video starts playing in a second.

LIVE STREAMING

  • Before deciding on streaming platform, you should take into consideration few important questions about the infrastructure, network traffic, live support during streaming. Below we dig deeper into each one of these topics.

Infrastructure

  • What video services have been used so far? For streaming live events the bandwidth is important factor. It affects video production and content delivery, as bandwidth measures how much data is transmitted through a connection over certain period. The higher the bandwidth connection, the more frames per second could be received, and respectively the better video streaming quality.
  • Player. Have you been using a video player for your services? If so, it would be valuable to know what it was. This would help us find the best strategy to stream your content at highest quality. JWPlayer is an HTML5 online video player. It is an open-source embeddable media player for web sites. Or it could be VideoJS, which is an HTML5 video player, with a fallback to a Flash video player for when the browser doesn't support HTML5 video.

Events and Traffic

To determine the traffic parameters and to recommend the best option to you, there are several questions you should take into consideration:

  • What is the average and maximum duration of a live event
  • How many live events you will broadcast daily/weekly/monthly
  • What’s the number of expected simultaneous viewers
  • How many viewers currently you have - expected scaling of numbers

Then you could pick for example between Amazon or Akamai. Bianor would recommend Akamai – it provides commitment for a year ahead; with monthly fee for the traffic generated; we could also offer discounts here.

Support and integration

  • Do you need live support during the broadcast? Technology handles it all - feeds, graphics, audio, video stream. But in crucial moments, like live sports events, where every second matters, our streaming experts are available to help with every aspect of your live video stream. From installation, integration, training and set-up, to dedicated support, Bianor offers the full package of services.
  • Bianor provides custom video platforms, that handle the complete cycle of live video broadcast, distribution, management, recommendation, analytics, and monetization. With Bianor’s solutions you could broadcast live events and 24/7 always-on feeds.

CUSTOM DEVELOPMENT, LICENSE, DEDICATED TEAM

  • Unlike competing companies with video streaming platforms, Bianor focuses on providing custom-made video platforms. We have in depth experience in developing streaming services with cloud-based media infrastructure.
  • Bianor also relies on already developed white label video streaming platform and we provide partial or full license on it, together with the necessary customizations. The platform is custom-developed, cloud-based patented technology. It utilizes the touch-screen interface of the phone for OTT content discovery and streaming. The platform streams pay-TV and over-the-top (OTT) video to DLNA, UPnP, AirPlay and Cast-compliant TVs, game consoles, and other connected devices. It utilizes the phone as a controller without the need to install any additional TV apps or TV boxes, thus enabling smooth high-quality video streaming, optimized phone battery life, and on-the-fly adaptation of the video stream to suit the capabilities of the target device.
  • To complete our value proposition, Bianor also provides, on subscription basis, dedicated professional teams to support different video platforms. We have gained plenty of experience in video streaming, starting from the R&D, business analysis, design, and going to development and support of live-streaming platforms. Our dedicated professional team will help you project digital media from your phone to your TV.
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