Video: How Does WebRTC Differ From HLS?

Learn more about WebRTC at Streaming Media's next event.

Watch the complete video of this presentation from Streaming Media West, VES203. WebRTC: The Future Champion of Low Latency, in the Streaming Media Conference Video Portal.

Read the complete transcript of this clip:

Dr. Alex Gouiallard: Let's go a little bit into the theory. What we're about to see is different from HLS. I'm pretty sure there are more people knowledgeable about HLS in the room than WebRTC.

If you look at a one-way media streaming pipeline, you have a media capture that touches the hardware, then you have the media engine and encoder on the sender side. On the receiving side, you have a decoder, but basically it's the same stack.

You can optimize a lot of things if you're not live. If you have prerecorded content, then basically all the encoding part, all the sending part can actually be done with an infinite amount of time. That Batman movie from '99 on Netflix has been around for a lot of time. You can do 4-pass or even 20-pass encoding. Netflix is doing a lot of very smart things there to actually optimize the encoding so the resulting file in the middle that's going to be stored, is going to be the smallest possible.

You can upload everything. On the download, you can also do a little bit on the transport. When people hear that they're about to see the thing right away about peer file or stream route, you draw two companies that use the P2P parts, not the media part of we're about to see, to actually optimize the distribution.
Instead of going from the CDN server to the players, each of the viewers that are looking at the same movie, at the same time will be able to share some of the chain together. You have some of the chain coming to you from the CDN and some of the chain coming through P2P connection to other people watching the same movie.

But you still need after to take care of the DRM, put the chain back together, play them, and display them, and there the resilience of the transport and all those steps to different network condition or variation are based on buffering technique.

HLS, by contrast, is a file-based, http-based technology. What we're about to see with WebRTC is direct streaming.

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