NAB 2016

NAB 2016: New Aspera FASPStream Software Enables Live Streaming of Broadcast-Quality Video Over IP

Aspera (Booth SL4910), an IBM company, is unveiling Aspera FASPStream, a turnkey application-software line designed to enable live streaming of broadcast-quality video globally over commodity internet networks with glitch-free playout and negligible startup time, reducing the need for expensive and limited satellite-based backhaul, transport, and distribution.

Aspera_IBM_drafts“Bringing FASPStream to market in a turnkey product after our first decade creating FASP file transfer marks the beginning of a new chapter for Aspera, where streams and files interoperate for exceptional transport quality and efficiency over today’s networks,” says Michelle Munson, CEO/co-founder, Aspera. “Internet content delivery has exploded, demanding open file-based solutions in application software that are up to the challenge.”

Live and near-live streaming of broadcast-quality video content over IP networks has traditionally used linear transport over satellite and dedicated fiber networks — high quality but limiting for today’s uses. Satellite uplinks and dedicated fiber are often not available on demand and can require large capital investments and long startup times. In addition, the linear-feed format can be difficult to customize and integrate with modern file- and cloud-based workflows.

Internet broadband bandwidth is increasingly available at production venues, opening the possibility for new live-video-transport solutions. Various products and services have been introduced, such as forward error correction over UDP, peer-to-peer distribution, and “inverse” CDNs. However, none provide the same universal quality and “zero-delay” experience of traditional live satellite transmission because they cannot guarantee arrival rates over long distance or wireless internet WANs having high round-trip time and packet loss without adding significant startup delay or costly workarounds.

Built from the ground up by Aspera, the FASPStream software uses the FASP bulk-data protocol to transport any live video source (local multicast, unicast UDP, TCP, or growing file source) and provides timely arrival of live video and data independent of network round-trip delay and packet loss. Less than five seconds of startup delay is required for 50-Mbps video streams transported over 250-ms round-trip latency and 3% packet loss, sufficient for 4K streaming between continents.

Aspera is demonstrating FASPStream with the transport of three live camera streams from South Africa, China, and New York to the Aspera booth for live decode and broadcast playout, as well as IP-based playout through local desktop media players.

The feed from New York will be sourced from Broadway Video, a global entertainment and media company founded by Lorne Michaels. Collaborating with Aspera to provide solutions for point-to-point and consumer-facing live video delivery, Broadway Video offers a suite of end-to-end solutions for production, postproduction, distribution, and delivery workflows and is now using Aspera FASPStream technology.

“Broadway Video is pioneering in the point-to-point video-delivery space, creating new workflows that reduce costly satellite and fiber-circuit backhauls and distribution infrastructures,” says Broadway Video COO Rob Weigand. “Application of FASPStream to these novel workflows ensures critical uptime and reliability, making point-to-point internet delivery of video possible and practical.”

Besides FASPStream software, Aspera is exhibiting its entire portfolio of high-speed file-transfer, -sharing, and -exchange solutions.

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