iPhone 3.0: HTTP Streaming Media


Apple Insider took a closer look at the HTTP Streaming Media feature that was highlighted as part of iPhone 3.0, but hasn't received a whole lot of attention since:

The real benefit to HTTP Live Streaming is that the server can maintain multiple versions of the clips in different formats. This allows an iPhone user with a WiFi connection to negotiate a higher quality version of the video than if only EDGE were available. Even better, the phone can renegotiate a higher or lower quality dynamically if it improves or loses signal. This enables the watcher to experience the best video quality possible at the current bandwidth available, continually optimized as new segments are requested.

We saw this demoed by ESPN during the iPhone 3.0 Sneak Peak Event. Better still, Apple is proposing it as an open standard, platform and player neutral, which could spur adaption

Check out the full article linked above, and iphone.akamai.com for examples.

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

iPhone 3.0: HTTP Streaming Media


That's awesome! I'm very excited about this! It would be nice to be able to stream even on EDGE without a lot of choking/stuttering. I've just tried to stream NASA live over EDGE and well it was painful to say the least. It kept stopping to load movie. I also watched a USA Today clip about the 3G S over EDGE and it was pretty good. Of course both were way better over WiFi! The 30 second skip back button was cool. Let's hope it becomes widely adopted!

The benefits of the new streaming protocol proposed by Apple is that it can traverse firewalls and change bit rates based upon changing network conditions. This makes it ideal for the iPhone and other mobile devices that rely on the network.
At Backbone Networks we just announced support for this new protocol on October 22, 2009. The IBS Student Radio Network will enable listeners to connect to their stations using this new protocol. For a link to the press release see below: