Building an Interactive App With Integrated Live VideoApril 25, 2019
Video streaming. When mobile developers hear those words, their primary concerns are the amount of power streaming requires and the complexity of the network layer. That’s because mobile phones lack the vast resources and unlimited power that most desktop computers have.
Luckily, in building the TriviaWOW interactive mobile app, our group at Radiant Interactive was able to leverage a helpful — and free — framework called the Wowza GoCoder SDK™. Using this SDK with the Wowza Streaming Cloud™ service made the process of integrating video easier than I could have imagined.
Diving Into Wowza’s GoCoder
I found the process of adding GoCoder to be simple for anyone with experience integrating a third-party framework. Once the framework was added, the only hiccup I ran into was obtaining a license key, which I was able to easily locate in my confirmation email.
I was delighted to find that I had video without needing to do much more after completing the project setup and configuration. The GoCoder SDK handled the connection and video processing, which is to say the majority of the work required to implement callback functions when an event got triggered. These metadata events were easy to capture using the available functions.
After the video stream had been set up (mostly by Wowza’s SDK and Streaming Cloud service), I just needed to adjust the user interface to the events that were coming through. That came down to a switch statement for each event, which would update the user interface depending on what was sent through the stream. There were small bits of data such as question number or answer 1. One trick that made the processing of data much faster and prevented unnecessary refreshing was to send the same data over five frames in case some of the video got dropped. Each event had its own guide key, which made it possible to know if the event had already been processed.
Having completed the necessary user interface adjustments for when a question was asked and the answer was announced, it dawned on me that I was just scratching the surface of what can be done with interactive streaming apps. It makes me really excited to continue using Wowza’s GoCoder SDK, since I know they’ll be doing the heavy lifting around video streaming.
Maybe the phrase ‘video streaming’ isn’t as scary as it once was.
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