News sites picking up share in the video streaming market

MUMBAI: While in India streaming downloads are very little absent thanks to the lack of bandwith in the US a study has found that streaming video on popular news sites has reached new levels of reliability and quality.

The study of seven news sites was conducted by Keynote Systems. Overall streaming registered last year was up 104 per cent. Last year the news category captured 28 per cent of the streaming viewing share.

It has also published results which are based on the two week period 24 April to 7 May. Keynote measured 2441 streams from seven sites. In a tight race, Abcnews came out on top for stream availability. The BBC is noticeably behind in terms of the quality of streams.

All the sites achieved availability scores of 98 per cent or better for their top video stories over a two-week period. Keynote used StreamQ which is its proprietary metric which provides an accurate measurement of overall stream quality based on connect time, buffer time, and rebuffer time. These streaming measurement criteria affect an end user's perception of the quality of the stream.

Keynote's study is particularly timely given the recovery of online advertising revenues in the US. Advertisers paying to sponsor streaming media need assurance that the brands they are paying to advertise on have created enough loyalty with quality offerings on their Web sites to keep the audience coming back.

The study makes clear the need for Web sites offering streaming as an important component of their overall offering to monitor their streams in order to assure a consistently positive streaming experience for site visitors.

BBC News lagged considerably behind for quality with a grade of C+. This low grade was a result of excessive buffering which meant that users on average, had to wait 18 seconds for a BBC video stream to begin. In contrast, Fox News had the fastest average start-up times, with streams starting around 1.7 seconds after the initial click.

Keynote benchmarks the performance of Internet applications including streamed media.

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