February 11, 2010

'Satellite truck in a backpack' by Livestream

Lagging a bit here, but mobile live video services from UStream, Qik, and Skype are joined by Livestream. Via NYT Lens then Engadget, Red Ferret explains :
"They’re calling it a satellite truck in a backpack, and at $2500 a month rental ($1500 a month on the annual plan) it could just revolutionise the whole news and local event reporting business in a big way. The monthly fee covers 30 hours of streaming including data fees, so small operators suddenly have a way to compete with the big shot news reporting outfits at a price that’s a game changer. Amazing tech. US only at the moment alas.
Just hook your Firewire DV camera up to the backpack, which contains 6 load balanced 3G/EVDO SIM card modems [over three carriers - AT&T, Verizon Wireless and Sprint], press the record button and you’re live to the world from anywhere there’s a 3G cell phone signal. The box contains the encoder and battery, and you can attach an external battery to give up to 3 hours of continuous recording at a time. The video is HD, 1 Mbps, H.264, so your viewers will not be disappointed with the image quality either."

Update: There are a few other implementations, one by AVIWest, and another release of LivePro by Kyte.

Comments from the latter article note that they'll all have to compete with 4G and the iPhone during the failing of traditional media, and "TWIT did this at CES a month ago using a home-built setup with the same basic configuration (multiple synchronous 3G cards)."

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