Watch Out JW Player, Here Comes Wowza Player; And Other News

Watch Out JW Player, Here Comes Wowza Player

Wowza Media Systems, a leading cloud-based provider of high quality audio and video streaming technologies, has unveiled Wowza Player, completing end-to-end solutions for its media workflows. Wowza Player is an embeddable media player, compatible with new and existing web applications, that complements existing Wowza workflows for adaptive bitrate streaming and HTTP Live Streaming. The media player also uses AI technology to optimize streaming bitrates depending on network conditions.

“Time and again our customers have asked if we could help streamline their workflows by providing an end-to-end solution,” says Charlie Good, CTO and cofounder, Wowza Media Systems. “Now, with the introduction of the Wowza Player, and future development kit, we’re giving application developers, live event producers and service providers a full suite of software products to address almost every live streaming or VOD need.”

Wowza Player features an embeddable HTML5 player, UI basic controls for dimension resizing, play, pause, seek, etc., variable bitrate playback, DVR capabilities, and an easy-to-use JavaScript API.

Wowza has announced intentions to continue supporting third-party players, including JW Player, Bitmovin Bitdash Player, OpenTelly THEO Player, NexStreaming, Radiant Media Player; and native players for set-top boxes and mobile devices.

Verizon Rolls Out Live Streaming Solution

Verizon Digital Media Services has rolled out its Live Streaming Solution, which simplifies and reduces costs for streaming content at scale, along with other key enhancements to its platform, including workflow enhancements to the Uplynk Video Streaming service, enhanced monitoring tools in Network Operations Centers, and a managed service team.

“Many of the leading media and entertainment brands trust us to deliver hundreds of simultaneous, high-profile, live events on any given day,” said Ralf Jacob, president of Verizon Digital Media Services. “The key learnings derived from years of experience with the largest live streaming events are driving the improvements and offerings that we’re announcing today.”

Some key features of the Live Streaming Solution include:

  • A cloud-based scheduler and an operator dashboard to provision encoders, manage live feeds, insert ad breaks and push slates in the Uplynk Video Streaming service.
  • Publishing a single live-stream URL that transitions seamlessly between pre-event, live, post-event and VOD to greatly simplify the syndication of content to internal or third-party content management systems and apps.
  • Automatic and instant creation of a VOD asset upon completion of the live event, without the need for re-encoding, which removes additional costs and delays.
  • Real-time health monitoring and failover support for the Uplynk Video Streaming service’s Slicer application running onsite at the venue or at the point of origination.
  • End-to-end intelligence and insights, correlating viewing analytics with network performance.

Limelight Introduces Web Application Firewall

Limelight Networks has added a web application firewall service to its suite of cloud security solutions. Limelight WAF is a cloud-based security solution that monitors and stops application attacks in real time. The WAF has been integrated into Limelight’s CDN, delivering cost-effective security for web applications over the globally distributed network architecture.

Application layer security is experiencing increased demand recently from enterprise as attacks are on the rise. Limelight WAF mitigates HTTP application threats by identifying and blocking common attacks such as Cross-Site Scripting and SQL Injection, and filtering and analyzing application requests in real-time. The adaptable solution creates new security rules whenever a new vulnerability is identified.

“Web Applications are attacked around the clock, and the attackers have all the time in the world to try to figure out new ways to breach your websites and cause havoc,” said Steve Miller-Jones, Senior Director of Product Management at Limelight Networks. “This is where Limelight WAF can help. It protects the integrity of your applications by providing the most accurate and advanced cloud-based protection to ensure an always-secure online experience for you and your customers.”

Cata Networks Raises $30MM

Cato Networks is a cybersecurity startup that has made waves, raising $30 million for its cloud-based network security as a service platform. The Series B round of funding was led by Greylock Partners, along with the collaboration of Singtel Innov8, U.S. Venture Partners (USVP), and Aspect Ventures.

Based in Tel Aviv and founded by Shlomo Kramer and Gur Shatz, Cato Networks promises a “totally new way to cut the cost and complexity of legacy, on-premise networking, and security solutions,” according to CEO Kramer, a cybersecurity expert and also cofounder of IT security juggernaut Check Point. Kramer points to Cato’s agile and scalable cloud-based platform as the linchpin of his security strategy.

“We aim to strengthen security posture with an agile network security platform that can scale to support any business need and rapidly adapt to emerging threats,” he said. “Cato is paving the way for a new, scalable, and simplified networking and security platform for enterprises of all sizes and offers lucrative opportunities for channel partners in the networking and security domains.”

Cato Networks plans to use the funding to expand its products into new markets. The successful funding round also underscores the popularity of cybersecurity services in the venture capital realm, especially as increasing numbers of companies transfer operations to the cloud.

Cato’s vaunted cloud service is now generally available after spending an extended period in beta.

“With the general availability of the Cato Cloud service and the rapid global deployment of the Cato Cloud Network, enterprises can cut cost and complexity out of their IT infrastructures while improving security posture and enterprise agility,” said Shatz, CTO of Cato Networks. “The Cato Cloud is currently in production with our first global, multi-site corporation, and we are running concurrent pilots for different use cases across dozens of organizations.”

Cloudfront Supports HTTP/2

Amazon Cloudfront now supports HTTP/2 protocol, which has the potential to reduce latency, streamline the process. HTTP/2 improves on its predecessor protocol by reusing the TCP connection.

Amazon CDN consumers can now enable HTTP/2 on a per-distribution basis. Because HTTP/2 often is used in conjunction with HTTPS connections, clients may need to make adjustments to enable it.

On the other hand, the connection between Amazon and the origin server utilizes HTTP/1 meaning Amazon CDN clients do not need to make server-side changes to deliver static or dynamic content over HTTP/2.

AWS is touting the fact that several of its customers have had positive experiences with HTTP/2 on CloudFront. Marfeel, an ad tech platform, found that CloudFront’s HTTP/2 support had decreased first-render time by 17%, achieving load times within 0.8 seconds, and improving mobile UX.

Wowza Partners With APAC Behemoth Alibaba Cloud

Wowza Media Systems has announced a partnership with Chinese juggernaut Alibaba Cloud to deliver streaming media globally, enabling Wowza Streaming Engine on Alibaba’s cloud platform. This will expand the global availability of the Wowza Streaming Engine and allow new and existing customers to expand their streaming services into China via Alibaba’s platform.

“One of the more complex challenges for streaming applications is expanding operations and availability into Chinese markets,” says Carlos Perez, Chief Revenue Officer, Wowza Media Systems. “This partnership provides an excellent opportunity for Wowza’s customers to extend their global reach on Alibaba Cloud; and for Alibaba Cloud customers who can now harness the power of live streaming to develop new applications.”

“Alibaba Cloud is focused on building a comprehensive and holistic global ecosystem that offers world-class cloud computing services. We welcome Wowza and its customers onto the Alibaba Cloud platform as we extend our global reach and continue to deliver outstanding value for our cloud computing infrastructure services,” says Michael Tsang, Regional Manager for North and South America. “By offering Wowza Streaming Engine on Alibaba Cloud, our customers can now harness the power of streaming video and audio, while reducing the complexities in developing and deploying streaming applications.”

Alibaba, an e-commerce giant, aims its cloud computing arm at enterprise customers, ranging from startups to established companies, providing lower cost cloud-based service delivery and big data analytics.

Wowza Streaming Engine software will be available through a bring-your-own license (BYOL) arrangement, making it more seamlessly compatible with Alibaba’s Elastic Compute Service, and allowing customers to rapidly scale and deliver streaming media concurrently in China and other international markets.

BelugaCDN Enters the CDN Ecosystem

BelugaCDN.com, a provider of high-performance CDN services, has become the first fully-featured IPv6 Content Delivery Network. The CDN service features a dual stack IPv4 + IPv6 network for both small and large objects, allowing customers to reach more users, especially those on mobile devices, quickly and efficiently.

There is growing need for IPv6 CDN, as Asia, Europe, North America, and Latin America have already depleted their IPv4 allotments, and Africa is expected to exhaust its allotment by 2018. While IPv6 comprises 14% of total Internet traffic, it is expected to skyrocket to over 34% by 2020. At that time, a full 90% of smartphones and tablets will be IPv6-compatible, putting BelugaCDN in a propitious position relative to IPv4 CDN providers.

In addition, BelugaCDN provides full SSL/TLS capabilities including HTTP/2, OSCP Stapling, ALPN/NPN, Dynamic record sizing, and Perfect forward secrecy. It also offers CDN traffic analytics and advanced protocol support for HD video streaming.

“Our mission is to create the world’s most affordable, easy-to-use Content Delivery Network,” said Dmitry Shklovsky, Director, BelugaCDN. “By empowering developers and everyday users with features previously reserved for only the Enterprise sector, we will help make the web better, faster, and much more enjoyable for everyone.”

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