TourGigs Becomes One of the First to Stream Concerts in 4KJuly 6, 2015
Case Study Snapshot
Media & Entertainment
Wowza Streaming Engine™
|Rackspace™||Gigcaster custom encoder|
|Enterprise—live and on-demand concert streaming|
TourGigs captures, produces and live-streams concerts in ultra-high-definition, letting viewers experience live music from the comfort of home: in real time and on demand. By building its streaming infrastructure on Wowza Streaming Engine™ server software, Gigcasters—TourGigs’ technology and engineering division—delivers smooth, professional-quality streams to fans wherever they are, on any device.
TourGigs Struggles to Balance Quality, Reliability and UX
The TourGigs founders recognized a huge unmet demand for live-streamed concerts, but also understood that live events are inherently tricky to stream:
- Traffic is often spiky.
- Live event length can exceed 12 hours for festivals.
- Outbound bandwidth at venues can be limited.
- Onsite hardware must be minimal to remain travel-ready.
When the TourGigs team began evaluating services to handle its live video streaming and video-on-demand (VOD) archiving, they had trouble finding a company that was as focused on quality, user experience (UX) and reliability as they were. So they decided to create an in-house solution, recruiting a talented team of streaming media veterans and engineers to form Gigcasters. They quickly identified Wowza Media Systems as a vendor that shared their attention to quality and reliability, and made Wowza Streaming Engine software the central component of their streaming platform.
Wowza Streaming Engine Provides Quality and Simplicity
Deploying Wowza Streaming Engine software in the cloud allows TourGigs to travel light without sacrificing quality:
- Reliable streaming with minimal available bandwidth: TourGigs sends a single high-definition (HD) or Ultra HD stream to cloud servers running Wowza Streaming Engine software, and Wowza technology takes it from there. This minimizes the encoder processing power and hardware needed at a venue, and cuts the required outbound bandwidth significantly. TourGigs is able to successfully stream live to 20,000+ concurrent users.
- Simple delivery to any device: Wowza Streaming Engine software allows TourGigs to deliver its video and audio streams in a range of streaming protocols to reach any viewing device, anywhere—from previous-generation cell phones to modern smartphones, tablets, over-the-top (OTT) devices, laptops and desktop computers.
- Adaptive streaming: The real-time video-transcoding capabilities in Wowza Streaming Engine software allows TourGigs to transcode live 4K video streams to deliver adaptive bitrate streaming that meets each viewer’s local bandwidth and hardware capabilities.
- Live-stream recording and distribution: Wowza Streaming Engine provides built-in recording, which allows TourGigs to instantly archive live streams and use the same product and infrastructure investment for on-demand playback and distribution.
The Wowza Streaming Engine/TourGigs workflow
Scalability, Speed and Savings Spur Customer Growth
Having found a live and VOD streaming solution that works well for its business, TourGigs is thriving, with an increasingly demanding production schedule. Here are a few ways the Wowza Streaming Engine–based approach benefits TourGigs:
- Rapid customer growth: In the span of a single year, TourGigs’ show schedule nearly tripled, along with its customer base.
- Unlimited scalability: Using Wowza Streaming Engine along with a scalable cloud and content delivery network (CDN) infrastructure allows TourGigs to scale distribution to meet the demands of any size audience, without significantly increasing capital expenditures. Over a 12-month period, TourGigs saved ~$100,000 by deploying Wowza technology in the cloud.
- Cost-effectiveness: TourGigs takes advantage of a Wowza Streaming Engine subscription license to cover its high production density. This allows it to spin up as many Wowza Streaming Engine instances as needed to address the ever-growing demand, and pay for only the number of instances used.
- Speed to market: Wowza technology is constantly evolving as the streaming industry advances. This future-proof approach allowed TourGigs to be among the first in the world to stream concerts in 4K, utilizing the next-generation H.265 codec.