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Zencoder Offers API for Live Cloud Video Transcoding

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In one of the first significant pre-NAB announcements, cloud encoding company Zencoder is releasing the Zencoder Live Cloud Transcoding service, an open API that offers simple and scalable encoding for live video.

With this offering, Zencoder (which is now owned by Brightcove) is going after the growing streamed live event market. One challenge for publishers hosting live events in getting all the necessary transcoding hardware up and operational, while another is uploading the video streams over often limited bandwidth. Zencoder makes the process less expensive by using a metered system so that publishers only pay for the transcoding resources they need. Using the API, publishers upload an RTMP stream from a lightweight encoder on a laptop. Once uploaded, Zencoder creates adaptive bitrate HLS and RTMP streams for viewers.

"We're making live streaming a reality for media companies, brand organizations, and startups through affordable, cloud-based encoding," says Jon Dahl, vice president of encoding services at Brightcove. "With Zencoder Live Cloud Transcoding, organizations can deliver high-quality live video streams to countless devices, from desktops to Android to iPad. And this is made possible without an upfront investment in a hardware encoder that will be out of date as soon as the next big device is released." 

Live Cloud Transcoding pricing starts at $10 per hour, and is based on the length of out input and output video streams, bitrate quality, and volume. Zencoder also offers monthly plans that include usage-based discounts, and annual plans that include volume discounts. 

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