Livestream Reveals Boldest Product Update in 7 Years

Livestream LogoLivestream has revealed their biggest, boldest, broadcasting tool update in their 7 year history. The Livestream website has a new look and experience, and so does their iPhone app. At NAB 2014, Livestream had demonstrations of Livestream for Glass, Livestream Studio Control Surface, Livestream Studio HD510, Livestream Studio HD1710, and Livestream Studio.

Livestream for Glass enables Glass users to produce hands-free, live streaming video, from their Google Glass. It is the first broadcasting video app for Glass. First, you need to install Livestream for Glass. Next, pair it with a Livestream event. To open the app, say “Ok Glass, Livestream.” Tap the side of your device and you are live!

Livestream Studio Control Surface is a modular control surface with 5 assignable tracks. It has a T-Bar and audio mixer and a USB connection to Livestream Studio. Tactile controls give you quick access to critical functions, including full motorized audio mixing and assignable triggers for current and future Studio features. Studio Surface is compatible with any hardware or software edition of Studio.

Livestream Studio HD510 is the ultimate portable live production switcher. It has a built in touch-screen display and unique form factor. The HD510 gives you flexibility and performance on the go. It can be carried on a plane using the provided carry bag.

Livestream Studio HD1710 is a supercharged rack-mount switcher with bundled control surface. It is designed for control rooms, production trucks, venues and studios where rack mountable form factor is a must.

Livestream Studio has had an upgrade. The free version is now available with multi-camera support and audio mixing. Studio Version 2.0 was previewed at NAB 2014. The full release will become available in May of 2014.

New Tek Lowers the Price of the TriCaster 450: Are They feeling the Heat

NewTekNewTek has lowered the price for the TriCaster 455 by $6000, it is now $9995. The TriCaster 455 is described as “the affordable, integrated solution to produce your 4-camera, 14-channel, HD live show with maximum creative firepower—but with minimal proportions.”-(NewTek) Within the podcasting community the TriCaster was made famous when it was first used by Leo Laporte and TWIT. For the longest time if you were a podcaster and wanted to do your shows live, the TriCaster was the way to go. Now though there is a new player in the field, LiveStream which offers the LiveStream Broadcaster, and the Studio Family of Products. The Livestream Studio™ HD50 is $6,999 and the Livestream Studio™ HD500 is $8,500. Both which offer similar options that the TriCaster offers for a much lower prices.

If NewTek the maker of the TriCaster is feeling the pressure than this is good for the live video podcasting community. True competition is always good, it leads to lower prices and better products. If this means a new TriCaster is on the way, well that is even better, either way it is good news.  The TriCaster 455 is an excellent product and this offer is only good until June 27, 2013.  If you are thinking of buying a TriCaster this is the time.

Livestream Broadcaster Review

I received the Livestream Broadcaster several hours ago and have been playing with it since it’s arrival. My initial impressions are mixed so lets start with the basics.

Straight out of the box when you power it up you need to connect it to the Internet to get it sync’d with your Livestream account. I connected the device via its network cable and it connected to Livestream and immediately asked to be updated. This took about 5 minutes (no issues), while I was waiting for it update I upgraded my Livestream basic account to a $45.00 per month “heavily limited” producer account, the first 3 months are free. The $45.00 a month essentially gives you ad free live streaming which you can do cheaper at Amazon, additionally you do not get shareable live stream embed code, and you are completely locked into the Livestream site.

I hate being locked into anything. But this is the restriction and the rules Livestream has in place at this time.

After it updated it presented me a code that I used to sync the device to my account. I did a quick Live Stream using a sony consumer camera I had lying around in the office, you can view the short video here. Once the stream is completed you can get a embed to put on a website but sadly it is not mobile ready.

I did nothing more than film the device in action and it worked as advertised. Knowing this device has been designed for portable use. I disconnected the device from the Lan cable and restarted it after I had plugged in my Sprint 3G/4G card. The device detected the Sprint wireless card but refused to ever connect to Sprint.

Strike 1 – The Livestream Broadcaster device will not connect to a Sprint U301 3G/4G usb Wireless Card to the Network!

I switched it to scan for wireless WiFi networks it found the 3 networks in my home, after entering in my password it connected to the wireless network with no issue. Every time it connects to the network is syncs with Livestream and through the menu system you can start a stream real easy.

Strike 2 – Every time you turn the device off, it does not save the password you entered for your WiFi network? Thus requiring you to manually enter it each time. This is a total fail and they will need to fix this. Be sure to keep your passwords short and 1-9 , abc as it takes a long time to key in letters in the middle of the alphabet.

Through the system menu on the device you can look at scheduled events that you have setup already online, you can set the stream quality, set the HDMI format from 480i, 576i720p 50, 720p 59.84, 720p 60. 1080i 50, 1080i 59.94, 1080i 60, 1080p 30. It auto-detects aspect ratio or you can set it to 4:3 or 16:9. The Audio menu allows to select HDMI, Line in or None and you can choose to have Stereo or Mono. The device also has a Auto resume feature which is real nice.

The menu system is really actually very good, and easy to navigate. Nothing compared to the Cerevo Liveshell device that I also have which online menu is a pain.

Minus the tech issues, this is nearly a perfect solution with “one” huge exception it really drives me crazy in the way that Livestream forces you to create an event before live streaming. You cannot just have a page on Livestream that you can easily send people to. The broadcaster account forces you to send folks to the Livestream site to a unique page with a new URL, for each live event. To me that is really is a deal killer.

I understand their reasoning they are selling a device similar to a cell phone model, the device is likely being sold at a loss, and they know that because they are “forcing” content creators to send their audience to the Livestream site that they are going to build traffic. It would not be so bad if I could have a “dedicated” Livestream landing page, that my live video could be found every time.

I would have paid a $1000.00 for the device plus a monthly fee to have a “dedicated” landing page on Livestream for all of my live shows. The folks at Ustream understand the value of having a dedicated show landing page. Who wants a landing page for a show to change each time you do a show livestream is not catering to serial content creators.

Overall Livestream has some bugs to fix. Wireless card support, Storing WiFi passwords and coming up with some additional producer options. I am very willing to pay for the added features. The question is will Livestream be willing to give up some control and quit forcing content creators into their way of thinking. Only time will tell. Is this device worth $495.00 in its current condition and restrictions I think so because the price point of something similar is much higher.

GNC-2012-04-13 #757 Are you an Enabler?

I have a couple of fantastic stories to tell you tonight, but you have to listen all the way through to get the impact. I leave for Vegas and NAB tonight. I would expect the Monday show to be a complication of content from the first day at NAB. Next weeks Thursday show may be a challenge as I get back into Honolulu very late.

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Links to all the articles talked about in this Podcast are on the Show Notes Page [Click Here]

Are 30 Second Ads Hurting uStream, Livestream, Justin.tv?

Ad Dollars

It’s the cost of doing business – advertising pays the bills. However, when you have a live show where someone clicks on – and is ready to move on when they don’t get instant gratification, 30 second ad might make them move on before they even see the show. Is 30 too long and what is the magic number?

But Hulu Does it…

Hulu, of course, has really cornered the market on stream TV. And most people will wait through the ads. Each ad is 30 seconds.

Some of them are longer and give you the option to watch the longer commercial to avoid the commercials at the breaks.  Some of them are only 10-15 second ads, too.

There are 7 commercial spots in a 1-hour TV show on Hulu. It’s network content from NBC, ABC, FOX (and soon CBS on HULU Plus). It’s not live content, so nobody misses a thing (Same thing with YouTube – pre-recorded, so an ad can easily go in without losing content time).

We might even expect and accept network TV ads simply because it is coming from a major network.

Why it doesn’t work on uStream, Justin.tv

Whereas Hulu contains studio productions that can take a pause 7 times a show, uStream and Justin.tv contains live content. Every extra second an ad takes, you lose what is being done or said.

For a person trying to start great content on this system, a 30 second commercial in the foreground could cause loss of viewership. The person, in turn, could just nix the idea and move on simply because it’s harder to get an audience.

Refresh

If the content freezes or if the system crashes, then when you head back to the site, you have to endure another 30 second ad. Would that make people feel the need to come back to the site?

How should they make money?

I’m not talking about taking away the ads – just remember that people will not only leave a show, but also leave a website because they are not entertained.

10-15 seconds ads sound palatable. Add the pop-up ad every now and then – You’ve got a winning combination. Maybe when the show is off-line, content is played with breaks – 15 seconds every 5-10 minutes of content.

Browser Blocker add-ons?

Yes – if you install an add-on blocker in your browser, you could avert those ads. Personally I wouldn’t do that. It is a free service, after all. They need to make money to keep it free.

Pay a Premium?

What if the content producer paid to do their show? Would that in turn be good or bad for companies like uStream?

If the consumer was asked to pay, you might get a few that do it for a while. Most would want to go somewhere else for their content. You can only ask and see what happens.

While sites like uStream, Livestream and Justin.tv need to make money, long ads in front of the videos might not be the answer. Re-thinking the ad sounds like a better idea. break up off-line content -Play an add every 5-10 minutes in a pre-recorded show. Pop-up video ads that are not too invasive. That is what is needed in a live “See it now” environment.

GNC-2009-11-13 #527 Lets have a Mini Contest!

Ok Mini contest someplace in the show, gonna make you do a little scavenger hunt hope you participate. Big thanks to Jeffrey and Sam who split the prize on suggestions for the Video portion of the show. While the implementation did not go perfect tonight we will get it dialed in over the coming weeks. Huge number of ideas all of them good, just need a banker as a friend to implement them all. Your show host needed sleep and a Red Bull neither which he has had much this week so have fun with Toddisms.

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Listener Links:
Bread Breaks Hadron Collider?
Mini Asteroid Near Miss.
Should we save Journalism?

Show Notes:
Flash puts us all in Danger!
Boxee Box on the Way!
Why is Tom Tom GPS Ap still $100.00?
Livestream iPhone Application.
iTunes Preview does it make sense?
The MPAA should not have this much power ever!
Microsoft Fights Back on Windows 7 / Mac Design.
Just a small sliver of Earth Outbound!
More Hardware on way to ISS.
Big Gamble for Newscorp will Google show them the Hand?
Digg Podcast Directory RIP.
Facebook iPhone App Developer walks away!
Perfect PC for the Living Room!
Making Vista work Better!
AT&T comes out swinging!
Google SPDY could revolutionize the Web!
Netflix needs to hear from us!
How Twitter is changing face of Media!
DOS on Wiretaps pretty scary stuff.
Facebook gets teen a get out of Jail Free Card!
1000’s of Xbox 360’s Locked out of Live!
Senator Mad at Verizon over $350.00 early Termination Fee.
Extradition of Hacker from UK doubtful.
Google Buys Gizmo5.
Verizon to do RIAA Evil doings!
NASA Rover to try and get dug out of mars sand box!

Send in your stories to geeknews@gmail.com and be sure to provide a link to your websites!


Video Produced by Executive Producer Jack Ellis