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Exodus Unveils Streaming Media Services

Hosting company Exodus (www.exodus.com) announced it has begun offering streaming media services. The company says it can provide design, implementation, consulting and management for companies looking to use streaming media. That includes Exodus' existing hosting clients to companies already using streaming.

"We found that an increasing number of companies wanted to know how to move from static web pages to streaming media," said Rikel Getty, senior director of streaming media at Exodus.

Getty says Exodus is providing a three-pronged approach: (a) streaming site design, (b) implementation and migration planning and (c) account management, to maintain the site. "It can be a full turnkey solution where we do everything, or companies can have their engineers remotely manage a server," he said. "If a customer wants a digital rights management solution, we can do that too."

These offerings are an extension of the streaming measurement service it launched in June. Exodus says it can help companies measuring the quality of their streams, by capturing data on buffering, packet loss, jitter and other variables. Competitor Keynote (www.keynote.com), also announced in June it was starting a similar streaming measurement service.

Although Keynote's and Exodus' quality measurement services are similar, Keynote injects subjective analysis to see how the streaming file looks to the client. Peter Yorke, director of streaming media at Exodus, says that it's too early to start measuring qualitatively.

"We measure quantitative data and take subjectivity out of the equation," he said. Analyzing the quality of streaming in a subjective manner is important, but Yorke said that it's too early to measure it effectively. At some point, Yorke said, Exodus will provide some subjective analysis.

During a recent interview, Keynote said that Exodus only offered its streaming measurement service to Exodus clients. But Yorke said that's not true. "No, anyone that has a streaming media site can use it," he said. "Plus we exist on as many, or more, collection agents as Keynote."

These "collection agents" are simulated connections to streams that capture the measurement data.

The area of stream quality measurement is sure to heat up as yet another competitor, StreamCheck (www.streamcheck.com), quietly rolled out its services recently.

With its new offerings today, however, Exodus has grown beyond measurement, and into a potentially more profitable space. Although Getty wouldn't say how much of the company's revenues would potentially come from its streaming business, he did say revenues would increase quarter over quarter. "There's no doubt, the market for streaming media is out there," he said.

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