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LiveU Shrinks Its Newest Model

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Anticipating new technology is like waiting for a bus. You wait ages for the one you want, then three come along all at once.

It's amazing that month or two ago I reviewed three tools that gave you a direct live-to-net streaming uplink using cellular links, all of which were revolutionising outside broadcast. I call them cellular multiplexers. [Dom's article, "Streaming From the Field," appears in the Autumn issue of the European edition of Streaming Media magazine, which will be online soon.-Ed.]

Oneby AVIWEST—was notably smaller than the others. It really stood out in that it represented the fundamental things that an outside broadcast satellite truck of the past used to do in pure function, and in a unit the size of a box of chocolates.

Then only days ago at IBC, TV1 updated its line of MiniCASTERs to include a "chocolate box"-size unit.


It was like "Eh – there’s a cluster of new technologies actually emerging here," an entirely new class of appliance" or device.

But THEN….

I was blown away by the fact that within a matter of days of TV1's announcement, I’m here AGAIN looking at a new "chocolate box" unit from ANOTHER vendor!

For real: Within days, we have gone from two players with their kit in rucksacks and one other who had a more portable unit, to three robust highly portable box or chocolate box sized units facing off strongly.

LiveU have brought out their unit and called it the—wait, wait—LU40i. Frankly its not a sexy name, but what it lacks in name it more than makes up for in nature providing a rich array of Layer 2 interfaces ranging from Ethernet and Wi-Fi to cellular links and they can all be aggregated to be treated as a single "fat pipe." This in turn can be made "fat" enough to then carry either SD or HD video.

It's extremely interesting to be near three products like these as they reach a maturity in their sector.

Finally these units are evolving from complex. experimental early stage models and are getting rugged, getting portable, and getting ready to physically be used in the way they are intended: in the field.

LiveU was a significant force in breaking these devices onto the market, and his new unit opens the field out.

I have asked LiveU to let me get my hands on a test unit, and if I can I will redo my review with all three small "chocolate boxes."

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