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Amazon's Six Factors for Choosing Codecs

What are the six most important factors for adopting codecs? Jan Ozer, Principal, Streaming Learning Center, Sr. Director, Video Technology Marketing, NETINT, Contributing Editor, Streaming Media, discusses this topic with Kevin Yao, Global Principal Solution Architect for Direct to Consumer, Media and Entertainment Solutions, AWS.

Ozer asks Yao, “How do you sense that the companies you work with choose which formats to support, and how far ahead of the mass market do they need to be? Because it feels like the publishers are kind of lagging indicators. They wait until a 30% adoption rate. But as a service provider, do you need to be in front of that?”

Yao says that it all depends on the use case at play. He breaks the question of adopting codecs down into six factors:

  • Bandwidth saving
  • Hardware and software support
  • Standard vs. Proprietary
  • Licensing: royalty vs. royalty-free
  • Latency – does the use case require low latency (such as live sports betting) or not?
  • Energy efficiency for greener streaming

Yao considers the sixth factor the most pressing and challenging. “Video accounts for over 60% downstream traffic on the internet,” he says. “Many energy resources are being used for encoding and decoding content. In addition, we need to consider how much energy is used to deliver the file across the fiber to the end users. So, that's definitely another factor to look at. So instead of the traditional sense, where we're just focusing on squeezing every bit out of the encoders, I think we need to consider the amount of energy used to create them. So at some point, there will be a trade-out between quality. We always want to reduce distortion, we want to reduce the bits, but now we're looking at reduced power consumption and carbon emission as well.”

Learn more about codecs and the greening of streaming at Streaming Media East 2023.

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