Sunday, September 21, 2008

About Face

The last few days has been a bit of a transmogrification for me. It has also taught me a lesson.

Down the years many people have come to me proposing to use Amazon's hosting for the CDN delivery. I was dubious of this from a technical and delivery perspective, but even more so from a cost perspective. Paying charges higher than those demanded of CDNs for a non-CDN solution seemed nuts, especially when it didn't offer streaming capabilities.

However, recently I've been taking a closer look at some of the webs services available for Internet TV and realised that the game has moved on and that some of these services are now becoming viable alternatives - under certain circumstances - to traditional self-hosted or outsourced services.

The rise of web services goes unabated and a huge amount of functions that used to demand installed processes are now available online and can be turned on or off like a tap; and you pay for what you use.

There are a  number of online encoding services available, from Google Video, which is free both for encoding and then for serving, but provides reasonably low quality, to services like HeyWatch, which is more configurable but relatively expensive 10c per encode credit) compared to using a free local application like SUPER.

This led me to return to Amazon's S3 hosting services to find that the prices have become more reasonable, albeit still only offering http serving.

This market is changing so fast that I've been guilty of thinking off old information. So, it's time to trawl the market again to see what's new, what's changed and what's improved.


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