Content Marketing

HTTP Live Streaming Players: 5 Features You Need to Know

HLS player which is also known as HTTP live streaming is a communication protocol which is the brainchild of Apple that was initially designed exclusively for the Apple devices but eventually it became compatible with other devices as well. Among the various commendable features, the HTTP live streaming platform uses the adaptive streaming technology which targets the streaming subscribers by providing them with both on-demand and live streaming services across all Apple devices.

Why do we need to go for an HLS Player technology?

Before we jump onto the bandwagon of using an HLS Player let us first see the primary reasons why one should use it in the first place.

  • Compatibility – HLS player has a great ubiquity which supports literally every browser including but not limited to Quicktime, Safari, Google Chrome browsers, Microsoft Edge, Linux and Microsoft platforms which makes HLS an optimal choice among its competitors. 
  • Straightforward Method – HLS streaming delivers audio and video content over the internet in a seamless way. Most of the streaming video player service that is available in the market today are required to go through a series of workflow right from hardware configuration to software encoding but on the other hand, HLS streaming is delivered across all devices by M3U8 files. M3U8 files contain the media file location in a playlist form, where it is stored as a file path in local machine and a URL for live streaming. 
  • Supports Closed Captions – HLS players contain in-built closed caption and are included in the MPEG-2 transport stream.  

How does HLS Player work?

The HLS player mainly consists of three components, the first component is the server, second is the distributor component and the final is the client software.

  • HLS Video Player basically gets the input of audio and video streams encrypts them digitally and encapsulates in a compatible format. 
  • Next in the distribution component which hosts a series of origin web servers, gets the client’s request and sent back to them in the form of index files. 
  • Here the client reads the index files and requests back the required content that is shared in segments. With the help of the Content Distribution Network (CDN), all these requests and responses are captured in the cache. This minimizes the load of the web servers to a great extent when other clients request similar data. 
HTTP Live Streaming Workflow

Features of HLS Player

HLS player is the default standard for all the audio and video streaming due to its various features which enhances the viewing experience without any buffering.  

  1. Adaptive Bitrate Streaming – Whether you are using a wired network or wireless the adaptive bitrate streaming technology allows the users to adapt to different speed quality dynamically and ensures excellent streaming quality without any interruption. HLS players are considered as one of the best video streaming platforms where the users can experience a picture perfect quality with the help of these HLS technologies at lower bitrates and also it can deliver Html5 live streaming video contents in a seamless way. Hence, HLS technology remains as a golden standard for live streaming the audio as well as video content.
  2. Multiple Format Player – In today’s time and age, the streaming video player should be able to deliver the contents with excellent quality no matter in which devices they may be viewed is essential. The HLS playeruses the most current streaming protocol for media streaming which uses the latest technology. HLS streams to smartphones, tablets, PCs and any other devices in any formats like MP4, M3U8 or MPEG dash or in any other format as well.  
  3. HLS & Dash Adaptive – DASH is the dynamic adaptive streaming model which is a successor to the HLS streaming method. DASH adaptive provides the international standard streaming which is based on the HTTP protocol. Along with HLS and Dash Adaptive streaming technology, the media contents can be delivered from any conventional web servers across the internet.
  4. Multi-bitrate HD Encoding – HLS technology effectively uses the multi-bitrate encoding technology where the video source is configured and encoded into different bitrates and broadcast into the chosen Content Development Network. This type of multi-bitrate or multiple streams makes these video streaming playersstand out among its competitors. These also enables the viewers to select a stream according to their bandwidth in a seamless way. For instance, if the viewer has higher bandwidth, they can choose 1080p60 or for medium bandwidth they can select 480p or 360p and so on. 
HTTP Live Streaming
  1. HLS Encryption Streaming – Basically, the HLS encryption uses AES encryption method where the video files are encrypted using special algorithms. HLS encryption streaming uses several effective methods to ensure the data is encrypted across the HTTPS protocol without exposing the key directly from the manifest file.
HTTP Live Streaming Encryption
  1. Faster Playback – Playback time is crucial for any streaming video playerand HLS technology effectively provides faster playback with the help of amazon web services with zero downtime.

HLS player provides end-end support to the users with impeccable quality and robust among the other live streaming format. To sum up, the HLS streaming technology has several advantages like adaptive streaming method, supports diverse platforms, contains multi-bit rate which can delivered across desktops and various mobile devices seamlessly. 

Vplayed is one of the best HLS players in the market today that provides compelling features which are on par with top-notch technologies which offers the users with excellent visual experience. With faster playback speed, Vplay streams the videos and audio content in a secured cloud hosting environment. 

Check Out Vplayed HLS Player

John Smith

John has 4+ Years of Experience as a Video On Demand (VOD) Expert. He's always learning and sharing new technologies in Video On Demand Industry.

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