I’ll be honest, I’m not a fan of trademarked terms meant to make something sound better than it is, and MLB’s NextDef is a case in point. But MLB and Swarmcast have created a service that works very well and they should be applauded for it.
No, a 1.2 Mbps stream won’t give you high definition, it’s not going to knock your socks off if attached to a large screen, but it is the highest quality live video currently offered on the internet. In this MLB has succeeded.
Live streaming is a very different beast than delivering on-demand content, and making possible the best experience for so many users with so many different connection speeds is no an easy task. According to the release, “On Opening Day, MLB.TV and Swarmcast delivered over 1.7 million live game streams” Based on that massive number, it’s no wonder there were some opening day issues.
Moreover it speaks to the advantage of having a client-side protocol like Swarmcast’s Autobahn that can measure and adapt to the unique conditions in each users home. While online, every connection is different, Autobahn, ensures that each user receives the best possible experience.
Said Joe Choti, Chief Technology Officer, MLB.com:
â€œExisting streaming technologies did not have the level of scalability we required and we realized that in order to grow our audience and improve video quality we needed a fundamentally different approach to streaming. Swarmcast presents the only method of delivering high-quality live streaming to hundreds of millions of viewers with the reliability that enables us to grow a business around the Internet as a distribution channel.â€
The expansion of Autobahn which had previously been used to power MLB’s Moasiac multi-game viewing option to all games shows that in places where content can be monetized, we are quickly moving toward much higher quality video on the net.
Corey Adds: Not to be a complete hater, I do have to give credit where it is due. While taking the Acela back from Boston last week, I was able to stream the Red Sox game I was leaving behind, nearly uninterrupted. The battle between “lean back” quality and content with any where, any time convenience continues on……