Internet Video newcomer Selfcast is attempting to be the next YouTube, only it’s content is live!
Selfcast is a platform for easily broadcasting video content live across the web. It’s the current pet project for London technology company RawFlow Ltd – a project six years in the making according to a report in the Scottish Sunday Herald.
The unique difference Selfcast brings to the cutting room floor, compared to popular video sharing sites such as YouTube, MySpace and Blinkx.com, is live content streaming. Videos aren’t stored on the site – instead you have access to hundreds of shows that are being broadcast live.
From a consumers perspective, you could literally run your own 24/7 live TV station through Selfcast – the company offer the service for free and there is no time restrictions on broadcasts.
This is by no means a brand new concept: Live video streaming has been well covered here before. But Selfcast may have a point of difference in being able to deliver high quality, full-scale broadcast TV, even if you only have a standard broadband connection.
The Technology Behind Selfcast.com
It’s important to point out how the technology works. The Selfcast software utilises RawFlow’s live P2P streaming technology. Just like any P2P network sharing application, this means that at some point your PC serves information to other users within the network.
To provide the P2P capabilities, Selfcast users are forced to download some software (about a 12Mb file) even if just vieing content – possibly causing some people to tune out.
RawFlow’s technology makes use of the redundant upstream bandwidth when you are watching a live stream. When someone else within the P2P network requests the same stream, your PC may well become the media server, pushing the content out to the network.
While this won’t worry most users, the security conscious amongst us may scrutinise the way the software and P2P network operates before becoming willing participants.
Some peace of mind can be gained by the fact that TV companies in both France and Denmark have been working closely with Selfcast to utilise the P2P technology – indicating that the technology is robust enough to be commercially viable.
All in all I think It’s a fantastic concept that allows anyone to broadcast high quality video with minimum risk or investment – now excuse me while I get makeup to attend to me before my first episode of “Tonight Live with Clayton”.
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