About jweiner

Jeff is the VP of Product, Marketing and Sales at Mersoft.

Mersoft stream™ Improves RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming

April 28, 2016 – Overland Park, KS – Today, Mersoft announces the latest release of its RTSP WebRTC live streaming product. Mersoft stream™ converts RTSP streaming media to WebRTC and HLS with sub-second latency to deliver the best live video streaming experience for video chat, security cameras and more.

The biggest problem accessing live video over a network connection today is the significant delay in both starting the video and in maintaining an experience that is near-real-time. Instead, many applications will require up to 60 seconds to establish a stream only to deliver a poor experience with a slow frame rate, frequent delays and poor resolution. These problems make live video feed over networks nearly useless. The only alternative being expensive hard-wired or closed-circuit (CCTV) equipment.

Mersoft stream™ is ideal for use with Wi-Fi cameras commonly used in homes and businesses. It extracts the H.264 media frames directly from a RTSP stream and repackages them in either WebRTC or HLS without transcoding. It buffers both the inbound and outbound streams to ensure the most consistent experience possible.

The April release enhancements include:

  • Even lower CPU utilization
  • Support for WebRTC engine version 49
  • Improved performance data
  • Improvements to RTSP restart and Peer connections
  • Enhanced jitter buffer including configurable and dynamic buffer sizing

“Our product engineering team works tirelessly to ensure Mersoft stream is exceeding customer expectations. The efficiency boost in this latest release puts the product ahead of any others in the marketplace. It is faster and runs in a lower CPU and memory footprint than ever before.”   Ron Sloop, CEO of Mersoft

Mersoft offers excellent professional services to integrate with providers’ systems, is carrier-grade and geo-diverse with available 24×7 support.

For more information, visit: https://mersoft.com

About Mersoft:

Mersoft is a Kansas City based software engineering firm delivering technology products and solutions since 1996. They provide carrier-grade technology solutions connecting service providers with their customers for enhanced product offerings needing messaging, video, presence, and real-time connectivity.

Customers describe Mersoft as the “Navy Seals” of software development because they take on tough challenges and consistently deliver. The company culture revolves around excelling in research and development, its engineers are focused on three factors: technology, solutions and services.

MEDIA INQUIRIES: +1-913-871-6200 or info@mersoft.com

Mersoft stream™ Improves RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming2018-01-09T16:47:50-06:00

WebRTC for Service Providers Who Are at a Crossroads

WebRTC for Service Providers Puts them at a Crossroads

I’m at Enterprise Connect this week and attended the “Service Provider Role in WebRTC” session.  Unfortunately, I didn’t quite hear what I had hoped.

Service providers (you can call them CSP’s, carriers, cable MSOs, etc.) are at a crossroads.  They can continue to think of themselves as voice and internet companies but they are slowly becoming utilities – like the electric or water company moving bits from point “A” to point “B” while “Over The Top” applications are doing all the innovation.  The economic model for a utility is pretty thin: sufficiently reliable service at the lowest possible price.

That option may be fine for some but for me, that sounds like no fun at all.  Besides, the real money is made with innovative solutions.    

CSPs have a position of strength if they build on it.  They know how to build reliable networks, how to scale and how the regulators work.  So, there’s no reason why they have to give up market share to companies like Twillio for API connectivity of WebRTC or the many communications apps.

Strategically, there’s a huge opportunity for them to take their network smarts and put an API layer on top for software companies to build real time communications.  They are already selling their services to API providers today, but offering the services directly, they gain margin and have the chance to add innovative capabilities that only the network owner can do.  AT&T is a good example in the U.S.

CSPs can also offer value-added services even amid the OTT applications available today.  By offering new services like video chat, media sharing and live camera streaming, cable MSOs are seeing that they increase subscriber adoption of bundled services which drives retention.  Comcast is a great example of this.

The last area I wish had been discussed more is inter-carrier connectivity.  Today, the OTT apps, and to a large extent, the carriers themselves don’t see a value in integration.  Facebook and Apple as examples, are not interested in integration if they can get everyone to use their tool (and see their ads).  However, the CSPs understand that ultimately, interconnection is necessary for the industry to truly evolve.  Some are beginning to talk about standards but they are running into outmoded thinking by regulators at least in the US.  However, service Providers know the FCC – sure you can say the FCC is stuck in the voice world, but who else has the access and the mass to get the regulators to listen?  

Their position is unique.  CSPs need to continue pushing with the FCC and similar bodies around the globe to really develop the next interconnect standard.  Otherwise, Microsoft, Apple and others will continue their walled garden approaches.  Right now, RTC apps feel like the early days of email when AOL and Prodigy couldn’t share email communication, and we all know where they ended up.  One example of people not waiting around is Matrix.org.  They created an open source platform for interconnection and are seeing steady growth.

In my view, the value proposition for service providers is clear – API services for software developers, value-added communication apps and  interconnection is a winning combination and won’t leave a CSP relegated to maintaining the water pipes.

OK, so that’s a little of what I was hoping to hear.  If you were there, let me know what you think.

Mersoft products are specifically designed to help service providers grow revenue and market share by increasing customer adoption of service bundles and increased service tiers.  If you are interested in learning more about how we can help your business, let’s talk: jeff.weiner@mersoft.com.

WebRTC for Service Providers Who Are at a Crossroads2018-01-09T16:47:51-06:00

Dish ARPU Up but New Service Offerings Needed

Dish announced earnings recently and while their ARPU “avg. revenue per user (customer)” went up 3.6%, they lost 81K subscribers.  The growth of SlingTV is helpful and they call it a growth area, However, it generates only about a quarter of the revenue per customer with plans starting at $20/month.  Also, nobody is really pointing out that to consume SlingTV, one must pay one of Dish’s wireline competitors for internet service.

This is another reminder of how important it is to diversify with new services as traditional TV content is no longer the “cash cow” of years past.  Dish needs to find a use for all their spectrum and since they have lots of cash, they might buy even more at the next spectrum auction.  But, what they will do with it remains the question.

Providers with a wire into the home still seem to have the edge for now.  They can offer integrated services with multi-screen TV delivery, home phone, mobile phone, and smart-home services.  When I talk to Mersoft customers, they tell us that these integrated offerings both retain their service bundles and often give customers reasons to upgrade to higher levels of service – higher retention and higher “ARPU” (average revenue per user).

That’s why Mersoft offers Mersoft move™ so communications services providers can offer voice, video, messaging and data services from media sharing, to personal broadcasting to truly live security camera streaming with Mersoftstream™.  These and other interesting use cases provide real value to customers who stick around.

Forbes has a quick rundown on Dish earnings here.

Check out Mersoft: https://mersoft.com

Dish ARPU Up but New Service Offerings Needed2018-01-09T16:47:52-06:00

RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming – Mersoft stream™ Product Overview and Case Study

The use of Wi-Fi cameras in home security has exploded in recent years.  Traditional security companies, cable companies and new entrants offer a variety of choices for consumers. The cost of services and equipment continues to fall allowing small and mid-sized businesses the opportunity to incorporate surveillance services. While there is no one set-standard, companies are converging on a few variants so iconic devices such as Nest learning thermostats, August smart door locks and a multitude of Wi-Fi cameras are available from many providers.

While the industry is growing at a brisk pace, there is evidence that slow, choppy real-time video is inhibiting adoption and reducing the usefulness of live video.

Argus Insights recently published a study where they found that while customers have high satisfaction with the smart devices themselves, the applications used to manage those devices fall short in customer satisfaction.  Unfortunately, the device is only as good as the software tools behind it.  When commenting on cameras, Argus reports,

“App functionality is a major consumer pain point, with frequent complaints of slow video streaming , long load times and the video blacking out.”

While many devices employed a smart-home installation, the camera stood out as unique because it is a valuable tool by itself for live streaming in residential use cases, business and law enforcement.  Unfortunately, cameras have a few challenges to overcome.  First, they are high-bandwidth.  Compressed, low-resolution video is acceptable in some situations, but consumers have grown accustomed to a high definition image (1920×1080 pixels) and high frame-rate (15+ frames per second).  Second, many cameras run H.264 or other proprietary codecs that require specific end-user software to play the stream such as Adobe Flash.  These clients are losing their support among browsers, and Adobe has announced it will eventually retire the Flash Player.

Mersoft recognized this technology gap in the industry and developed Mersoft stream™ specifically to enable high-quality and truly real-time video with RTSP WebRTC live streaming.

Mersoft stream™ addresses the current challenges in the following ways:

  1. Uses WebRTC: Google released WebRTC to the open source community in 2011 and continues to release updates. The capability encapsulates a set of APIs and codecs that make media streaming possible in browsers without plug-ins or by including it in native mobile and desktop apps.   Compared to many solutions in use today, WebRTC is current, far more secure, and requires no user intervention.
  2. Not a protocol converter: When streaming video from a camera, many applications convert the H.264 stream in order to play it on various platforms. Instead, Mersoft stream™ extracts the H.264 media frame by frame and packages it into WebRTC. By avoiding the protocol conversion, it occupies a very low processor and memory footprint plus runs lightning fast with processing times down to 50 ms.
  3. Stays in sync: It synchronizes time stamps between RTSP and WebRTC on each frame coming from the camera so that it accurately catches up after frames are lost.
  4. Has a Buffer: To avoid jitter and lag, there is a buffer that can be configured to just enough delay to provide a smooth video stream. By definition, a buffer would result in the video technically being something less than live. Even the best networks have issues on occasion so a second or two delay can make all the difference in providing a smooth video experience for customers.

A Note on Audio:

If audio is part of the RTSP WebRTC live streaming, Mersoft stream™ handles it separately.   It supports most audio codecs and will do transcoding. However, transcoding audio is much less processor-intensive and so the typical delay in the media often remains under 1 second.

Real-World Example

Situation:

Mersoft worked with a large North American cable company to provide live streaming between their wi-fi cameras and set-top boxes. Their previous experience used other client players and was bad enough they decided to delay launch. Mersoft stream™ was installed in their network between the smart device mediation layer and the set-top boxes. Then, Mersoft worked with the internal development team who created a set-top box application to select and display a camera for live streaming. The set-top box supports H.264 and WebRTC. In this situation, there are multiple firewalls to traverse and all the applications are cloud-hosted. Mersoft stream™ worked together with its companion product Mersoft move™ which handles the signaling and notifications to set up the call.

Impact:

The original application was taking 15-30 seconds to begin, then provided a very unreliable stream delayed usually by 5- 30 seconds. After the implementation of Mersoft stream™, a typical stream begins in under 3 seconds and has a sub 1-second delay from camera to the set-top box. (Client, camera, network and firewall performance varies and will affect this number).

Client Interface Options

Mersoft offers several options to integrate Mersoft stream™ for your customers. There are client libraries that can be run on set-top boxes, iOS and Android mobile devices, or for native Windows and Mac laptops. Mersoft can develop entirely new applications for your customers or can work to integrate Mersoft stream™ capability into your existing apps.

 Hosting Options

Mersoft stream™ can be installed in the client datacenter or hosted by Mersoft for a easy and rapid deployment.

 

Questions?

Contact Mersoft to get more information and a demo. Increase customer satisfaction in your video streaming product with RTSP WEbRTC live streaming from Mersoft stream. Email: info@mersoft.com or call 913-871-6200.

RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming – Mersoft stream™ Product Overview and Case Study2018-01-09T16:47:52-06:00

Alphabet Spends Big On Google Fiber

In the earnings announcement this week, Alphabet (the parent company of Google) shared that most of it’s $869 million in capital spend on “Other Bets” went to Google Fiber, according to CFO Ruth Porat, and that Google Fiber would continue to be a driver of CapEx spending going forward.  Assessment of Google Fiber customer service is mixed which is not surprising, since the service is new and Google is not a service company, they are an advertising company.  Nevertheless, customer adoption rates their first market of Kansas City have been high especially among middle-income and affluent households.

It’s been about 5 years since they first launched in Kansas City, KS.  Since then, Fiber has been expanding to many other cities in the metro.  A recent study by Bernstein and reported by Multichannel.com says,

Based on a past door-to-door survey in Google “Fiberhoods” in Kansas City, Bernstein estimates Google Fiber has achieved a penetration rate of about 20% of homes passed within one year of turning on service, “putting it well on the way to exceed 40% of homes passed and realize attractive ROIs.”

The cable companies are not sitting idle.  As one example, my suburban KC neighborhood doesn’t yet have Google Fiber.  It’s on the plan this year, but already TWC offered a free upgrade to 300MB service, Consolidated is coming down on price, and AT&T is busy burying fiber to deliver their own gigabit to my house in a few months.  Google managed to changed the competitive dynamics in our market even with only 20% penetration.

Of course, time will tell if Google decides to keep forging ahead and expands to become a national marketshare threat.  In addition, they are using their brand halo and “cherry picking” areas that are cost-effective – tactics that are garnering protests from existing cable providers.  So, the quick municipal approvals and utility right-of-way access may not continue.  However, they clearly have the financial resources to invest and continue to do so.

Alphabet Spends Big On Google Fiber2018-01-09T16:47:52-06:00

Mersoft stream™ Even Better RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming

October 12, 2015 – Overland Park, KS


Today, Mersoft announces the latest release of its RTSP WebRTC live streaming product.  Mersoft stream™ converts RTSP streaming media to WebRTC and HLS with sub-second latency to deliver the best live video streaming experience for video chat, security cameras and more.

The biggest problem accessing live video over a network connection today is the  delay in both starting the video and in maintaining an experience that is near-real-time. Instead, many apps  require up to 60 seconds to start a stream only to deliver a bad experience with a slow frame rate, jitter and low resolution. These problems make live video feed over networks nearly useless. The only alternative being expensive hard-wired or closed-circuit (CCTV) equipment.

Mersoft stream™ is ideal for use with Wi-Fi cameras commonly used in homes and businesses. It extracts the H.264 media frames directly from a RTSP stream and repackages them in either WebRTC or HLS without transcoding. It buffers both the inbound and outbound streams to ensure the most consistent experience possible.  The best way to deliver live video in this situation is through RTSP WebRTC live streaming.

In the October release, enhancements include:

  • Lower CPU utilization
  • Configurable values for RTSP timeout
  • Improved handling of disconnects in the RTSP WebRTC live stream
  • Stability and performance enhancements
  • Improved logging, usage logging, and outputs formatted for Splunk
  • Improved keyframe detection for quicker video feed creation
  • Improved compatibility for Firefox 39+
  • Additional versions of RedHat and Ubuntu supported
  • Automated deployment via Puppet

Mersoft offers excellent professional services to integrate with other systems, is carrier-grade and geo-diverse with available 24×7 support.

For more information, visit: https://mersoft.com

About Mersoft:

Mersoft is a Kansas City based software engineering firm delivering technology products and solutions since 1996. They provide carrier-grade technology solutions connecting service providers with their customers for enhanced product offerings needing messaging, video, presence, and real-time connectivity.

Customers describe Mersoft as the “Navy Seals” of software development because they take on tough challenges and consistently deliver. The company culture revolves around excelling in research and development, its engineers are focused on three factors: technology, solutions and services.

MEDIA INQUIRIES: +1-913-871-6200 or info@mersoft.com

Mersoft stream™ Even Better RTSP WebRTC Live Streaming2018-01-09T16:47:53-06:00

Mersoft launches it’s newest product, Mersoft stream

Mersoft stream logo

May 15, 2015 – Overland Park, KS – Today, Mersoft announces its newest product. Mersoft stream™ converts RTSP streaming media to WebRTC and HLS with sub-second latency to deliver the best live video streaming experience for video chat, security cameras and more.

The biggest problem accessing live video over a network connection today is the significant delay in both starting the video and in maintaining an experience that is near-real-time. Instead, many applications will require up to 60 seconds to establish a stream only to deliver a poor experience with a slow frame rate, frequent delays and poor resolution. These problems make live video feed over networks nearly useless. The only alternative being expensive hard-wired or closed-circuit (CCTV) equipment.

Mersoft stream™ is ideal for use with Wi-Fi cameras commonly used in homes and businesses. It extracts the H.264 media frames directly from a RTSP stream and repackages them in either WebRTC or HLS without transcoding. It buffers both the inbound and outbound streams to ensure the most consistent experience possible.

Jeff Weiner, VP of Product says, “Every smart-home and security service provider has run into this challenge. We just asked ourselves, why do they have to choose between poor video or expensive equipment? So, we found a way to deliver great RTSP video over Wi-Fi using existing cameras.”

Mersoft stream sits between the RTSP cameras and clients to deliver either WebRTC or HLS video with sub-second delay.

Mersoft offers excellent professional services to integrate with providers’ systems, is carrier-grade and geo-diverse with available 24×7 support.

For more information, visit: https://mersoft.com

About Mersoft:

Mersoft is a Kansas City based software engineering firm delivering technology products and solutions since 1996. They provide carrier-grade technology solutions connecting service providers with their customers for enhanced product offerings needing messaging, video, presence, and real-time connectivity.

Customers describe Mersoft as the “Navy Seals” of software development because they take on tough challenges and consistently deliver. The company culture revolves around excelling in research and development, its engineers are focused on three factors: technology, solutions and services.

MEDIA INQUIRIES: +1-913-871-6200 or info@mersoft.com

Mersoft launches it’s newest product, Mersoft stream2018-01-09T16:47:53-06:00

Mersoft launches latest version of it’s Mersoft move™ cloud hosted service

Mersoft move logo

December 12, 2013 – Kansas City Metro – Mersoft announces today it’s latest version of the Mersoft move™ Cloud hosted service. Mersoft move™ offers carrier-grade voice, video and messaging services to telecommunications companies and cable operators. It seamlessly integrates with a carrier’s existing network and compliments other services. Mersoft move™ not only provides great two-way live video, voice and messaging, it can also provide powerful value-added communications features for home security, distance learning and telemedicine.

Mersoft move™ was first launched as a product that would run in an operator’s data center. Now, the Mersoft move™ Cloud hosted solution is available with integration to carriers’ networks, without having to host it themselves.

Jeff Smith, principal architect for Mersoft move™ says, “The technology is well-suited to offer a limited launch and avoid a large build-out effort. It’s also great for smaller providers to offer advanced features.”

Mersoft offers excellent professional services to integrate with providers’ existing network and systems. The Mersoft move™ cloud is carrier-grade and geo-diverse with available 24×7 support.

MEDIA INQUIRIES: +1-913-871-6200 or info@mersoft.com

Mersoft launches latest version of it’s Mersoft move™ cloud hosted service2018-01-09T16:47:54-06:00