A 15-year-old packet delivery system is buried within HTTP Live Streaming. It's time to rebuild it from the ground up.


Is old technology holding us back when it comes to searching for the promised land of efficient HTTP streaming? While the current hype surrounds HTTP delivery as being less costly—and by assumption, more efficient—than traditional streaming, the question is one that the industry should consider, in light of the advances in both HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) and fragmented MPEG-4 (fMP4) that have been announced recently.


The more mature (or long-in-the-tooth, depending on your perspective) technology on the market is MPEG-2 Transport Stream (M2TS), which makes up the packaging protocol for content delivery in HLS.


HLS has gained huge popularity, in no small part because it’s the only way to stream to the iOS devices. Let me be the first to say that MPEG-2 Transport Stream is a tried-and-true technology that has been used extensively for broadcast transmission over the past decade. Yet its age makes it a bit of a millstone that seems to be holding back advances in the over-all HTTP streaming marketplace.

Via Nicolas Weil