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Best Video Streaming Protocols To Know For Live Streaming in 2022

In this article, we’ll compare the most popular live stream protocols at Flicknexs, a white-label video streaming solution, and help you decide which one is best for your needs. Basically, there is no such thing as a “bad” streaming protocol. Although it sounds a bit complicated, you really don’t need special training to understand video streaming protocols. This is what we want to prove!!!

What Is a Live streaming protocol?

A protocol is a set of rules that control how data is transferred from one communication system to another. They form a protocol stack. In this way, protocols at each layer can focus on specific activities and cooperate with each other. The lowest layer acts as a base, and each layer above adds complexity. You may have heard the name IP address, which stands for Internet Protocol. This protocol defines how devices connected to the Internet exchange data. The Internet Protocol is located at the network layer. It is usually replaced by Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) at the transport layer and Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) at the application layer.

Which Factors Should You Consider When Choosing a Video Streaming Protocol?

The choice of video streaming protocol depends on the development needs of your application. The following factors should be considered when choosing a protocol:

  • Requirements for video codecs;
  • Whether it is a proprietary protocol or open source
  • The quality of viewing video content, that is, whether the adaptive bitrate protocol is enabled.
  • Latency;
  • Proportions;
  • Background support;
  • Program type, i.e. the first part of miles vs Last mile delivery.

5 Common Video Streaming Protocols

There are five basic video streaming protocols to follow commonly while you about to know about video streaming platform:

HTTP Live Streaming (HLS)

HLS streaming is an alternative protocol developed by Apple. HLS stands for HTTP Live Streaming and is the most widely used streaming protocol on the Internet today. However, this wasn’t always the case, because when Flash was still around, RTMP was the streaming protocol of choice. HLS is a bitrate adaptive protocol that also uses HTTP servers. This protocol is an evolving specification as Apple continues to add features and continuously improve HLS.

HTTP Dynamic Streaming (HDS)

Adobe created HDS (HTTP Dynamic Streaming) in 2009 based on RTMP. HDS is compatible with the Adaptive Bitrate protocol and is used with Flash Player. Adobe no longer supports Flash.

This has reduced the popularity of HDS and we expect that it will not be used in the future. HDS supports ABS and works well with flash.

These are its advantages. HDS is a proprietary technology and will be discontinued. This is not suitable for most purposes.

Secure Reliable Transport (SRT)

Secure Reliable Transport (SRT) is a relatively new streaming protocol from Haivision, a major player in the online streaming space. SRT is an open source protocol that could be the future of streaming. This video streaming protocol is known for its security, reliability and low latency.

As there are still some compatibility limitations with this protocol, SRT still holds promise for the future. The protocol itself is open source and highly interoperable, but other streaming hardware and software have not yet been developed to support the protocol.

Currently, the best way to access SRT is to use technology installed or maintained by members of the SRT Alliance.

Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC)

Web real-Time Communications (WebRTC) is a relatively new protocol compared to the others on our list, and although it is not technically a streaming protocol, it is often discussed. This is largely responsible for your ability to directly join live video conferences. in your browser

WebRTC became very popular during the pandemic because it was designed to support web conferencing and VoIP. Microsoft Teams uses WebRTC for voice and video communication, which has become popular during the pandemic.

WebRTC supports adaptive streaming similar to HLS and MPEG-DASH. Like HLS, WebRTC relies on direct encryption to perform multi-bit changes so that users with weak and unreliable connections can enjoy streaming. WebRTC has a promising future.

Real-Time Streaming Protocol (RTSP)

Real-Time Streaming Protocol (RTSP) is a traditional streaming protocol similar to RTMP. Developers don’t use it to play videos because Android and iOS devices don’t have RTSP compatible video players. IP cameras support RTSP. Therefore, CCTV cameras used for surveillance still use RTSP. This allows you to interact with your audience in real time without any lag. It uses Opus audio codec and H.264 video codec to provide a good combination of quality, smooth playback and low latency.

Wrapping up

As you can see, streaming protocols are hard to understand. A streaming protocol is a set of rules that define how data is transferred over the Internet. We looked at four popular live streaming protocols: RTMP, WebRTC, FTL and SRT. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, which means that you can use both depending on your needs. However, you can use Flicknexs and not worry about these technicalities anymore.

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