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Adaptive streaming or bitrate switching allows clients to automatically switch between different video streams during playback, to ensure the highest possible video quality with minimum buffering and startup time. This way, clients can adapt dynamically to changing bandwidth conditions and available CPU resources, which makes this delivery method especially well suited for mobile devices. Moreover, by using HTTP as the stream transfer protocol, firewall issues are being avoided.
Currently, there are three main flavors of HTTP adaptive streaming - by Apple, Microsoft and Adobe - each targeting their own platform.
Below you will find an example of the Apple (HLS) and Microsoft (Smooth Streaming) implementations.
What's interesting for you is that you only need to encode your media sources once. Our media servers can deliver the same H.264/AAC encoded file to any platform or device, using Flash, HLS or Silverlight streaming. And thanks to our multi-bitrate encoding profiles even mobile devices under low bandwidth conditions do not have to skip a single frame.
Want to know more? Read our blog post on how to get started.