Ankoder – Video Encoding on Demand
Rex Chung wrote to tell me that his EC2-powered Ankoder site can now segment files for iPhone HTTP streaming. As noted in the iPhone Dev Center, HTTP streaming obviates the need for specialized servers, extra firewall entries, and other complexity. It supports live and video on demand sessions.
The Ankoder blog contains a complete walkthrough of the encoding and segmenting process.
The process proceeds as follows:
- Enter URLs for notification, external file storage (S3, FTP, and SFTP are supported), and thumbnail storage. Files stored in S3 can be marked as publicly viewable with a checkbox.
- Choose the input format, bit rate, and screen size. Presets are provided for common cases such as “iphone streaming 500 kbit/second.”
- Set up the video segmentation. You can choose to start from the beginning of the input file or skip ahead any number of seconds, and you can decide how many seconds of video should be included in each segment.
- Define the output format or formats. You can encode to multiple formats at once to reduce bandwidth costs.
- Upload a file from your browser or use the Ankoder API to do it programmatically.
- Await notification that the work has been done. Ankoder uses EC2 High CPU medium instances and starts additional servers on demand to ensure that the maximum wait time is just 10 minutes.
Pricing is determined by the amount of upload and download bandwidth consumed during the encoding process. Bandwidth is charged at $0.002 per megabyte ($2.00 per gigabyte). You can transcode 100 50 megabyte videos into 3 formats for about $25.00.