video streaming definitions for faith streaming

5 Video Definitions You Should Know for Faith Streaming

Whether your ministry is just getting started, or whether you’ve been streaming your services for years, it is always important to have an up-to-date understanding of the fundamentals of faith streaming. And with the quick pace at which technology is changing, it’s a good idea to sit down for a quick refresher every now and then.

In this blog post, we’re going to review the five video streaming definitions that are the most important for people using video streaming for ministry. 

1. Over-the-Top Content

Over-the-top content (OTT) is video transmitted as a standalone product over the internet. In broadcasting, OTT providers deliver video content over the internet instead of traditional cable or satellite services.

Anyone can create OTT content, so long as they have the tools to deliver their content over the internet, which is much more cost-effective than dedicated cable or satellite connections. While its low cost makes OTT attractive to smaller organizations looking to share video content, OTT has become a popular choice for bigger organizations like Netflix, Apple TV, Hulu, and Amazon.

Learn more about Over-the-Top Content.

2. Bandwidth

In the most basic of terms, bandwidth is the volume of information per unit of time that a transmission medium, like an internet connection, can handle.

A good analogy for bandwidth, would be a highway. A four-lane highway can move 100 cars quicker than a two-lane highway. As bandwidth increases, so does the amount of data that can flow through in a given amount of time.

This means that a connection with a larger bandwidth can move data, such as a video or audio file, faster than a connection with a lower bandwidth. For real-time video applications, the more bandwidth that is available, the higher the quality of video that can be transported.

Bandwidth is usually measured in bits per second, or bps. 80 Mbps or Mb/s, for example, describes a data transfer rate of 80 million bits, or ‘megabits’, every second. 

Learn more about bandwidth.

3. Content Delivery Network

The term Content Delivery Network (CDN) describes a network of servers and data centers that distribute and deliver content as close to the viewer as possible. There are many different kinds of CDN, but they all have the ultimate goal – making sure that users don’t have to fetch their content directly from the source, which could easily be on the other side of the world.

In faith streaming, a CDN will take the source video stream, and move that single source stream across the core of its network, delivering it to the server closest to the viewers. This server is often referred to as an “edge server.” 

A CDN can make sharing your ministry’s message over video easier, by helping ensure that your viewers on the other side of the country, or even the world, can have the same viewing experience as those sitting in your ministry. 

Learn more about Content Delivery Networks.

4. Metadata

Metadata and metatags are what search engines use to match searchers to online content. In faith streaming and television broadcasting, video metadata is used to provide information about specific video and audio streams or files. Video metadata can either be embedded directly into the video or included as a separate file within a container such as MP4 or MKV.

There are three main kinds of metadata: descriptive, structural, and administrative. Descriptive metadata typically includes itemized information about the content like the title, subject, and keywords. Structural metadata is used to define how content is assembled so as to better promote content in search engine page rankings and results. Administrative metadata may include closed captioning information, copyright or ownership information and archival data.

Learn more about metadata.

5. Video Encoder

A video encoder converts analog or digital video to another digital video format for delivery to a video decoder. Generally, for broadcast, video encoders will convert SDI to the H.264 or HEVC video codecs, compressing the video files and facilitating their transport.

Different video encoders have different strengths and capabilities. Some are designed to survive more rugged environments, whereas others can encode in very high quality, such as 4K, others still can encode multiple videos simultaneously. Generally speaking, when streaming video for ministry, you want a video encoder with lower latency, and higher quality to create the best possible viewing experience

Learn more about video encoders.

Having a solid foundation on which to build your knowledge of faith streaming is important to sharing your ministry’s message online with video, and we hope these definitions helped. 

Another important part of sharing your ministry’s message online is by having the right tools and the right support for your team. Take a look at our video streaming solutions for ministry, and learn how our team can help yours to share your ministry’s message.

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