Review: Wowza Media Server for Cross-Platform Live Media Streaming

Wowza Media ServerA media server is something that serves the purpose of live streaming the content to any screen, may that be a computer, a laptop, a smartphone or a TV screen. There are several apps and softwares that would do the job of streaming the media and storing the files, but not each of it would hold the same potential. One of the best media servers right now that we see worth the money is Wowza Media Server. It is something that can easily match or beat the capability of some of the desktop media servers which we heard of, like Plex, Subsonic, PlayOn etc. This media server is dedicated to provide high-performance, high-value unified streaming media and video software for any screen.

Although we do share most of the time about the stuff that doesn’t cost much or is available for free for the users, some of the chargeable tempting solutions are worth mentioning, and here are a few reasons why we would suggest Wowza Media Server:

  • Super performance: This multi-threaded software is capable to deliver to up to 10Gbps speeds of video streaming per-server on a standard hardware
  • Unifies into single workflow: The Wowza unifies H.264 streaming into a single workflow so that you can stream the content to any screen simultaneously, and there are special addons too available which would make the non-H.264 content played into a compatible screen
  • Cross Platform: The Wowza server would make it easy for users to deploy the content on the OS of their own choice – Windows, Linux, Unix, Mac OS X etc.
  • Extensible: The good thing about Wowza is that you get to use the various APIs and the Java mechanism would help you make the Media Server compatible to any kind of application

What all AddOns one can use along with the Wowza Media Server

  • Wowza DRM – The studio-approved digital rights management platforms can be easily integrated along with these media servers and this would enable in easy encryption of the content which can be played live and on-demand.
  • Wowza nDVR – The nDVR addon would help in minimizing the storage requirements, and thus is helpful in making higher revenues and increase the viewer engagement with the time-shifted features.
  • Wowza Transcoder – Transform incoming live streams into multiple stream sets for H.264 adaptive bitrate delivery. Non-adaptive streams are also delivered over any Wowza-supported transport protocol.
  • StreamLock™ AddOn – This addon, using RTMPS would provide a more secured streaming of content, which is recognized as more secure than RTMPE for securing both live and on-demand video streaming.
  • Bandwidth Checker – This addon helps in checking how much bandwidth is available for media streaming in the player client. This would be helpful in getting an idea of the appropriate bitrate for the remaining bandwidth.

Wowza Streaming

Pricing of Wowza Media Server:
The streaming license is available for monthly subscription or a day license, or even as a single-time pay Perpetual License. The prices are as follows:

  • Monthly license: $55 / server / month
  • Daily license: $5 / server / day
  • Perpetual License: $995
  • Developer License: FREE

Compared to the Adobe® FMIS 4.5 doing a similar job, the pricing is quite less as the Adobe platform doesn’t provide any trial period or subscription license but there is a single Perpetual license costing $4500. The other option would be Microsoft® IIS Smooth Streaming® which would come for free initial usage with the OS itself, and is priced at minimum $469 but the problem is with the limitations, as the one from MS doesn’t offer the addons and extra stuff.

Note: This is a review based on one’s request, and thus we don’t have a functional demo of the same. We would add that soon.

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