HBO, Showtime, and Sony want to buy fast lanes for their web TV services

The FCC acknowledges that all packets are not equal, and that some can benefit from a little prioritization over other packets that are not time sensitive. OTT providers can take advantage and benefit from this fact to deliver a quality of service equivalent to the incumbent providers.

By Jacob Kastrenakes and Ben Popper

Online television is taking off in a major way, and now some of the biggest providers are looking for assurances that they can keep delivering their content reliably. According toThe Wall Street JournalHBOShowtime, and Sony have all been speaking with internet providers, including Comcast, about the possibility of being treated as “specialized services,” separating them out from other internet traffic and essentially giving them a fast lane to consumers. Though fast lanes are explicitly prohibited under the FCC‘s new net neutrality rules, these fast lanes actually fall in a strange gray area that’s yet to be explored. Continue reading

Netflix and Akamai Reports Show Sustained Broadband Speeds Falter in U.S.

Image representing Netflix as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

Nate Hakken, Reporter,

WASHINGTON, February 7, 2011 – Online content providers Netflix and Akamai released data recently indicating that U.S. internet service providers meet expectations for promised peak broadband speeds, but fall short when it comes to sustained speeds.

Netflix, which offers streaming video on-demand, released data and charts last month through its blog.  The company evaluated sustained downloads as part of its high definition streaming service specific to Internet Service Providers (ISP)s.

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Access Bandwidth Bottleneck Drives Innovation for Online Video Delivery

South Korean Digital Mobile Television.
Image via Wikipedia

Adaptive bit rate streaming, content caching, and other techniques are great ways to improve the quality of real-time services, but they all fail when they eventually encounter congestion.  These techniques need to be combined with quality of service markings to ensure that real-time traffic is prioritized before non-real-time traffic like common web browsing.  Once differentiated services are offered, consumers will have a true choice of content providers from traditional voice and video distributors.

Philip Hunter, Reporter,

LONDON, October 1, 2010 – With online video now the main cause of internet bottlenecks and consumer frustration over poor performance, new ways are emerging to provide better picture quality within limited bandwidth under the banner of Adaptive Bit Rate Streaming.

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