Tacking the Tough With SRT: Thierry Scozzesi of Cloud Production Platform, Dazzl

Livestreaming on social media is on fire. Whether it’s breaking news, celebrity events or sporting competitions, it’s a robust, game-changing video genre driving tremendous growth. When I spoke with Thierry Scozzesi, CEO and co-founder of cloud production platform, Dazzl, he sized up the market this way:

“Only 2% of all sporting events are broadcast on linear TV. Even with all the sports on TV, that’s only 2%. There is so much additional sports streaming coming!”

However, live video production is really hard. It takes enormous effort in labor, machinery, and software. As just one detailed example, live sporting events on broadcast TV typically have two fully redundant video feeds running over private fiber and satellite networks. Not to mention production trucks and remote studios filled with skilled operators at the dials of sophisticated, expensive machinery. Video switchers, audio mixers, replay and graphics servers, and camera robots.

All of that expense and hard work is for a reason. When a livestream fails, the reputational and financial loss is just as big a negative as the livestream was supposed to be as a positive.

Now, imagine being able to produce a live social stream using public internet and cloud infrastructure? That’s still a dream, right?

There’s fantastic news here, of course:

First, if you’re sending feeds to the cloud, the SRT protocol crushes the reliability obstacle. Consider it a bonus that you get a flexible & well-documented AES encryption stack, ultra-low latency, and synchronized latency. 

SRT is 100% Free and Open Source Software, a.k.a. FOSS, and available for download here: Github.

Second, once these feeds are in the cloud, a brand new class of technology – cloud production platforms, or CPPs – are rapidly emerging to switch the feeds, mix audio into them, add graphics and interactive elements, and finally, stream the output to multiple social networks.

This is where Dazzl shines. And by adopting SRT into its platform-as-a-service cloud production platform, it’s bringing security and reliability into live, multi-camera productions in the toughest connectivity environments imaginable.

“As an industry, as a market, we are still in the reliability and stability phase. We take this very seriously at Dazzl. And still, we embrace the challenge and work under these difficult conditions. Take a bike race or outdoor adventure races covering many miles. These races take place on mountain roads and other outdoor terrains. Our customers have used drones, our mobile app, and multiple cameras with camera-top encoders in difficult mobile data environments over 3G, 4G and now 5G. It’s tough. It’s very tough. But that is why we are using SRT.”

To get to know Dazzl a bit better, and for the reader’s convenience, I’ve reviewed two well-documented Dazzl case studies below and matched them up with tidbits Thierry shared with me on our call.

First, post-match coverage of hockey on Facebook Live by RSI in Switzerland.

Said Thierry, as we discussed the need for simplicity and reliability:

“One of our customers, a public broadcaster, they wanted to ramp up their Facebook Live activity. But they need those teams, the digital teams, they need them to be totally autonomous, self-sufficient. And they need it to work reliably. They cannot promote hockey coverage and have things fail. So, ultimately this is our core positioning at Dazzl, to ensure our customer does not fail.”

Second, Salomon Maxi Race in Annecy, France that featured drone footage and Dazzl Mobile App contribution via 4G wireless networks in remote areas.

 “They came to us with a need for a light broadcast solution. They wanted to follow the entire race, with quite a few journalists, each using the Dazzl Mobile App to send feeds into the Dazzl Remote Cloud Production system. So, the need was not only multi-camera but multi-device. Each different location input needed to be produced and switched in real-time. We also published the feed to multiple social and digital platforms, integrating both graphics and interactivity. The real-time engagement and interaction with the audience, it truly increased virality and conversation around the broadcast. The customer was delighted by that element.”

Drone footage? Mobile contribution over 4G links? 117-kilometer race in the rugged outdoors?  SRT-enabled Dazzl has the first two covered. To race that distance? You’ll have to train!

Want to learn more about SRT?
Our white paper explains why SRT shines for cloud-based workflows and highlights the strategic benefits it brings to both broadcasters and service providers. Download your copy of Live Video Transport: The Race for Cloud Leadership today!


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