Video streaming requires enormous space and bandwidth, well over what any other form of web hosting will need. Security is also essential, as public or commercial videos are as prone to piracy as private videos are to violation. To ensure that your videos are viewed smoothly and without interruptions by everyone who wants to watch them, it is crucial to choose a good video streaming host.
However, there is one major hurdle in the process. Video streaming hosting is a highly expensive affair. Oftener than not, the extra services provided by the video streaming host is unnecessary for the user – unless s/he requires services such as live webcasting. For the average user, hosting videos on the regular web host is usually enough.
The cheapest and easier video streaming option is to stream from your existing web server. This does not need any additional hardware or software installations, is easy to maintain, but offers little control to the end user and very few facilities to viewers. The protocol used here is standard HTTP – the same protocol used to load web pages and most embedded media.
For users just beginning to stream video from their sites, the only thing necessary to ensure that transfers can proceed smoothly is to check with monthly file transfer limit. If the data transferred during video streaming stays within the transfer limit, there is no need to consider a change of ISP just yet.
Alternatively, video server software may be necessary for users with advanced needs. Video server software is quite expensive, allows load balancing, automatic bandwidth negotiation, and lets visitors fast-forward through videos. Video server software can be used with Flash Video, Windows Media and Quicktime.
Some Internet Service Providers(ISPs) come with video servers as part of their offered hosting packages. These video servers can be used by the clients if they specifically need to do so. Typically, most ISPs can cope with up to 1,000 minutes of video each day on a general hosting plan. If an individual’s or a company’s needs exceed that, they can opt for these higher-level video streaming options.
For clients whose video streaming hosting needs exceed what the typical ISP’s video servers can provide, moving to an ISP which specializes in video throughput may be necessary. These ISPs have extremely high bandwidth, and some are optimized specifically for video streaming hosting.
The last word in video streaming hosting, however, are companies who have data servers distributed throughout the world. This results in consistent high speeds and unparalleled reliability, ideal for the needs of people whose videos are viewed by thousands of people every day – or even every hour.
For people who plan to host multiple, highly-viewed videos on their website in the future, it is best to invest in an ISP which offers high video throughput when necessary, from a video server of its own. This will allow users to upgrade from basic hosting plans to advanced ones as their videos grow in popularity, without going through the hassles associated with changing ISPs.