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The Role of RTMP in Streaming's Future

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Learn more about streaming protocols and latency at Streaming Media East Connect 2021.

Read the complete transcript of this clip:

Eric Schumacher-Rasmussen: We've all been hearing about the demise of flash and RTMP for quite a while, but many applications still use it. Many end users have not necessarily followed those little pop-up messages on our screens telling us to uninstall it or stop using it. So is it really going away and what's going to replace it when it does?

Todd Erdley: Sorry. I got a pop-up. I'll be right back. I have to close my Adobe Flash pop-up. But in all seriousness, it's a great technology, and you know what? RTMP can be part of the solution for low-latency delivery if handled properly. But I'll go back to my supply chain axiom: When you really, really think about it, when we double encode, when we really do this double encoding and we start to add time and cost and all sorts of things to the delivery of the video, that becomes something that we really need to move away from. And so I think that one of the transformative things, as far as the intersection between cloud and edge, cloud and prem, and camera to ultimate delivery, is where does RTMP have a place and where does RTMP not have a place? And I think as we really concentrate on HTTP-based streaming, I think that we need to think about RTMP going away into a different world. It has a place, don't get me wrong, but I think that we need to be much more dedicated to what are the formats that we all want as end delivery points. And how do we start that process becoming very simple by giving that format at the head end of the whole process? So these are the transformative things that I think really start to make RTMP go away in certain situations.

Neil Glazebrook: We still have an RTMP service. We're probably one of the few global CDNs that still offer it. There's cost and overhead associated to keeping that infrastructure going and fix bugs and so on and so forth. We're balancing that with customers that still rely on the technology to support their services, whether they're gaming or gambling organizations, or they're doing video conferencing-related services. Our goal is to offer those customers a migration to a technology that's going to enable them to provide their customers a better experience at economics that are better. It's a little bit of carrot and stick that's our plan through 2021.

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