One size does not necessarily fit all.
One of our jobs in event production is to choose a web conferencing technology that will best fit our client’s needs. After years of testing performance and functionality, V2 is licensed and certified on the best solutions for clients: ON24, INXPO, Adobe, WebEx Event Center, Live Meeting, GoTo Webinar, Stream 57 and Lync. It is important to note that V2 has no web conferencing allegiance; technologies on our list come and go based on overall performance and as new technologies enter the marketplace. In event production there are many differentiators that drive the web platform decision process but from a high level there are two primary console archetypes; that of collaboration and that of marketing. At a granular level collaboration is generally done on ‘Progressive Download’ consoles and marketing events on ‘True Streaming’ conferencing solutions.
True Streaming – This refers to technologies which match the bandwidth of the media signal to the viewer’s connection, so that the media is always seen in real time. The word “True” is added to differentiate this type of streaming from “HTTP Streaming” (aka “Progressive Download”). Specialized media servers and streaming protocols such as RTSP are needed to enable true streaming.
Progressive Download – This refers to online media which users may watch as it downloads. Progressive download files don’t adjust to match bandwidth of the user’s connection like a true streaming format. QuickTime’s “fast start” feature is a progressive download technology.
Technology examples of true streaming consoles are ON24 and INXPO where Adobe, WebEx, GoToWebinar, Live Meeting or Lync are progressive download. Those of you wondering what the user interface differences between “true streaming” and “progressive download” just need think about YouTube and the download bar i.e., you know you are in progressive download because you cannot skip ahead and watch areas that have not downloaded. Compare this with NetFlix where you can bounce ahead in the movie the moment it starts playing.
Stay tuned next week when we will delve into why True Streaming tools are better suited toward marketing endeavors.
PS- As alluded to in the title, this is just the first chapter in the console V2 fit process, in the weeks to come we will discuss; tablet and cell phone support, meeting size, social media integration, repurposing and recording, marketing application integration (Marketo or Eloqua), E-Learning reporting (Moodle), CRM connectors (SalesForce), and finish with price.