Google is aiming to make it easier for organizations to stream high quality, on-demand video and audio content to global users of its cloud-computing platform.
The company on Wednesday announced the availability of Wowza Media Systems’ Streaming Engine software as a click-to-deploy option on Google Cloud Platform.
All of Wowza’s functionality, including its technology for transcoding video to different formats to accommodate a variety of end user devices, is now available to Google Cloud Platform customers.
The cloud-based set up allows organizations to combine Google’s high-performance virtualization technologies, fast virtual machine provisioning and global load balancing functionality with Wowza’s streaming engine capabilities.
“Cost advantages include per-minute-billing and sustained use discounts that kick in automatically,” said Srikanth Belwadi product manager of Google’s Cloud Platform in a blog post earlier this week.
Wowza bills its technology as a robust, highly customizable, media server software for streaming high-quality video and audio to any device. The technology can be used both in on-premises and in cloud-hosted environments.
According to an official description of the technology, Wowza Streaming Engine is platform- agnostic and capable of supporting multiple formats and screen sizes. The technology is designed to process video in practically any format, transcode it just once and then deliver the content to any connected devices.
Google Compute Engine provides a “rock-solid cloud platform” for streaming video and audio content, said Charlie Good, chief technology officer and co-founder of Wowza Media Systems in the same blog post. “For Wowza customers that need to get up and running quickly, Google Compute Engine is a great option for consistent, global streaming of live and video-on-demand content to any device,” Good said.
Google’s partnership with Wowza comes amid surging demand for video content online from Internet consumers around the world. The demand will cause online video to constitute more than 80 percent of global Internet traffic in the next four years, Belwadi said. Cisco has an even more aggressive estimate. The network giant predicts that 80 percent of all traffic online will be video content by the end of 2019 a year earlier than Belwadi's estimate.
Video already accounts for more than 50 percent of all content consumed online, Belwadi noted. Users want video content delivered to them increasingly on their own terms, in HD quality with minimal delay, when they want it and on devices of their choice.
But “procuring, configuring, and deploying a media server capable of reliable, high quality video and audio streaming can be expensive and complex,” Belwadi said.
Cloud-based content streaming of the sort offered by Google in conjunction with Wowza, gives organizations broad reach almost immediately. It offers a relatively simple and inexpensive way to deliver video content to broad, geographically dispersed audiences Belwadi said.
Google rivals like Amazon and Microsoft offer similar video streaming capabilities for their customers. Microsoft for instance offers Azure Media Services for organizations looking to stream video content from the cloud while Amazon’s CloudFront CDN supports video streaming as part of a broader portfolio of cloud-based content delivery services.