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Speedera Announces Live Streaming Solution

Speedera (www.speedera.com) announced its live content delivery streaming service, adding to its existing on-demand solution. Speedera says it can deliver Windows Media, Real, QuickTime, MP3, MPEG-1, MPEG-4 and RTSP.

The core focus of the company, said Gordon Smith, VP of Marketing, is to "solve problems of performance and availability of Web content." Speedera delivers all kinds of content including streaming media. But Smith wouldn't say how much streaming the company delivers. "We don't publicly release that detail, but it's definitely the more rapidly rising component of our business," he said.

Speedera's on-demand delivery solution debuted late last year without support for live streaming, mostly because it was easier to implement, said Smith. He also said there was a stronger demand for on-demand streaming.

Smith said Speedera uses a proprietary algorithm to move the bits along the network. "We actively monitor the network, feed that information to the traffic managers to figure out where the content need to be routed," he said. Speedera offers a browser-based interface called SpeedEye to manage its streaming services. It offers full control, monitoring and reporting of streaming events.

Smith makes it clear that Speedera doesn't own the network. "We own hardware and software that we place in data centers," he said. "It doesn't make sense to own the pipes, since you want to be on all the networks." The real magic is in Speedera's software. "We built all the core technology ourselves, except where it made sense to buy off the shelf products," he said. The off-the-shelf software is in the form of Real and Windows Media servers. QuickTime support is added through RealServer.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based Speedera was founded in 2000 with funding by Trinity Ventures, HP, Oracle, Stanford University, Comdisco, and a division of Deutsche Banc. It has received $40 million to date, building out over 100 POP locations in 20 countries. Current customers include Yack, Convera, Listen.com and Hewlett-Packard. "We're pleased by the quality of our customers," said Smith.

Smith also said Speedera concentrates just on content delivery, not on full streaming services. "For those, customers are more likely to go to Activate or MediaOnDemand, not directly to Speedera. We don't aspire to run production facilities or encoding."

Services are priced on a "per event" or monthly charges. Additional pricing factors include bit rate, duration of event, and number of simultaneous streams. Service Level Agreements (SLA) are included with all Speedera services at no additional charge.

What about competing with the likes of Akamai and Digital Island? Smith brushes them off saying Speedera does more streaming. "We have built all our own core technologies, so it's not from acquired companies and technologies," he said. "Others have been around for a while, and I think that's saddled them with yesterday's technology. We have the advantage of building our format and service, from more sophisticated technology and we fully control and give a fully integrated solution."

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