Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Verizon: "video quality has to be optimized to the particular device it's consumed on"

Interesting story by Sarah Reedy (pictured) for Light Reading provides insight into Verizon's 3G/4G video optimization technology. 
Mitch Dornich, Verizon's director of product management and head of Verizon Video, told Sarah the following (there is more in the article "Verizon Tweaks Mobile Video for Data Caps" - here - I just took the optimization related stuff):
  • Video quality has to be optimized to the particular device it's consumed on .. taking into account if the phone is on 3G or 4G, how large the screen is, how capable the processor is and what kind of data package the consumer has
  • We’ve matrixed and said, 'Based on a device with a screen size of X and processor of Y and a 3G network, here's the optimum bit rate to stream it at and how to encode it' .. It’s not prioritizing traffic or differentiating traffic. It's right-sizing to the size of the device.

  • That doesn't mean always delivering the highest-quality video either .. It's what the processor can handle, as well as what makes sense based on the user's data plan (see "Verizon's UBB Starts July 7; Tethering Surcharge: $20"- here)

Nevertheless, Verizon said in September (here) that  ".. to optimize our network, we manage data connection speeds for a small subset of customers".

So we are looking at a combination of policies, with different goals. 

See also a previous post - "Optimization Deployment: Verizon Wireless Optimizes Web & Video using Transcoding, Caching and Buffer Tuning" - here).

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