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Streaming Media
Magazine

June 2019
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NAB Spotlight: Dazzl.tv Talks Multicam Production in the Cloud

Dazzl.tv VP Marketing & Sales Ryan Jespersen and Streaming Media Producer's Anthony Burokas discuss multicam live streaming production in the cloud.

Transcript

Anthony: My name is Anthony Burokas with Streaming Media Producer here at NAB 2019. I'm gonna dazzle you with something a little bit interesting today. I'm here with Ryan from Dazzl.tv, which is internet production, in the cloud. There's no truck. There's no switcher hardware. There's no nothing. How does that work?

Ryan: Well I think there's a movement in the industry right now to move away from on-site production, on-site OB trucks, expensive workflows, and trying to open up live events streaming to the masses. And that's really where Dazzl came from, is we are a multicam switcher, multicam production suite, all built in the cloud. So there's absolutely no hardware. There's no on-site equipment at all. And you can use everything from a mobile camera, like an iOS or Android device, we have a free app, or, you an use a professional ENG camera that's running an encoder and our team streaming into our platform. So it really opens up live event streaming to a whole new range of customers.

Anthony: Now, you're saying this as we're doing a live event, multistream camera stream here with, I mean we don't have a production truck, but, in terms of doing a multicam live events, we kinda have to be specific when it comes to the type of event. Now, when you say if somebody wanted to do a corporate event in a conference room and show it in the room, this is not that solution, but, if somebody's doing a live sporting event for an online audience. So, do you have an example of that?

Ryan: Absolutely. So, the NFL's gonna have millions of dollars to spend on daily productions. They've got 50 cameras in a particular stadium. They've got OB trucks. They have a dedicated satellite connection. That kind of budget is just out of the reach of just your every day video producer or live event producer. So what we're trying to do is we're trying to bring an extremely affordable workflow in the cloud and we're also trying to really simplify the workflow for live event producers. So I would argue that the set up you guys have here right now is actually fairly technical. And you'd have to have a pretty good knowledge of how to do live event production to do it. Our solution actually takes that out of the equation. That someone that's actually in the field, shooting an event, doesn't have to be an Avid video producer at all. As an example, Spartan Race, a very popular weekend warrior-type adventure race, is using us and they have monitors that are on the course, obstacle course, who are already monitoring, volunteering their time, they can pull up the app and they can actually become a live camera feed into Dazzl. The producer can sit half a world away. You don't have to fly them to the event. In this workflow, you have to have the producer on site, which is usually the more expensive, from a production perspective, from a cost perspective, fly somebody out. So with Spartan, they've got someone half a world away producing these events on a weekend basis, which saves them infinite amount of costs. So there's no live camera production. There's no on-site trucks. It's just people using a phone that's in their pocket. And using a drone with an encoder, using a professional camera, you can mix those in too. But, you can do, pretty much, live event production at a fraction of the cost than you can previously.

Anthony: Now, production. We're looking at the interface here. So you got multiple cameras, you've got different types of sources. I guess you got video playback, you got titles and graphics. Then what about encoding and streaming, how does that come into play?

Ryan: Yeah, so, you kinda hit it on the head, if anyone's done any kind of video editing, whether it be Adobe Premiere, or they've done something in a live streaming environment, like Wirecast or OBS, this will look very familiar. Down here, the video sources, we can pull in all kinds of video sources from mobile app, our mobile app, as well as your web browser, the default technology is a WebRTC, which is a very fast switching technology, so the latency's very low. And we can also use the browser as a capture device. So you can use this in an educational environment. You can use it in a corporate environment, to actually produce a webinar-type platform, but then also pull in those professional camera feeds, switch between them, add graphics, we integrate with Singular, which is a very popular graphics engine, through their API, that allows you to overlay scores, in the case of events. You can embed your twitter feed, you can embed breaking news, all these different sources. And then from there, you push that live, out to a variety of different streaming platforms. So this could be social platforms like Facebook Live, YouTube Live, Periscope, even LinkedIn now has a live streaming platform, or a generic RTMP output. And that RTMP output could be a Wowza, it could be a live streaming service, it could be a OVP, like Brightcove, Ooyala, or so on, or even to a CDN like Akamai for delivery. So currently we don't offer the delivery and distribution piece, apart from getting it to social media. If you wanna white label that, you can use a great vendor like Wowza, something like that, to really put that out to the masses.

Anthony: So, basically, you've got acquisition, manipulation, and pushing it out, all in a virtual environment that doesn't require, I mean it also technically doesn't require any investment in hardware, either. 'Cause you're not buying a video mixer, you're not buying all these monitors, and all this stuff. It's just sort of like, listen, this is the package. How is it priced?

Ryan: So it's priced based on, we start as low as $500 a month, so we have a monthly subscription type model. And then depending on the amount of usage, we have different tiers, going up to $1750 a month, and that's dollars or euros. And then we have custom plans. If you're doing a one-off event, any given month, you don't want a full month plan, we can do custom pricing for events as well. I think this is a big trend in the industry, is going towards the cloud, going towards trying to create these kinda thin clients, where you can use an iPad to actually produce. Our entire interface is touchscreen enabled, so you can pull up an iPad and actually produce this, all with using a thin client, but all the actual processing power happens out in the cloud. And we use AWS as our vendor, so a very robust cloud vendor, that we can spin up instances at a global level, depending where a particular event is happening.

Anthony: Wow. So, that is, sort of an example, of where production can be going if you are looking to do something in even remote locations. You can have multiple cities, multiple countries involved in a production around the world, have it all come in and be able to produce that in a way that really wasn't possible with hardware-based systems of any type.

Ryan: Yeah, completely agree. With our iPhone and iOS app, or iOS and Android app, we also have a tally, and a two-way communication with a producer. So even though the producer might be sitting in Tokyo, and the event's happening in Seattle, they can speak to each other and he can say, "Hey, focus in on this, focus in on that," and when he's on his iPhone, he can actually know, he has a tally, letting him know that it's live at that given point, which is something you don't even see with professional camera workflows, unless you have an extremely expensive tally solution.

Anthony: Right.

Ryan: So, and we're working with SRT right now, as an ingest, to do really secure, reliable, transport ingest into the platform. So you can really add those professional workflows as well.

Anthony: Wow. Well that sounds like an excellent option for those people looking to get into this thing, especially in the larger scope of production. Once again, I'm here with Ryan at Dazzl.tv. My name is Anthony Burokas. I am here at NAB 2019 for Streaming Media Producer. Thanks for watching.

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