Statistical Multiplexing (Statmux) is a feature of the AWS Elemental MediaLive video processing service that lets you prepare and share live broadcast video for distribution. Statmux is a technology that allocates bits in real time among multiple live video channels, combining the encoded outputs into a single transport stream. With Statmux, you can process and originate live content and share it with distribution partners for delivery over satellite, cable, or terrestrial networks. Statmux for MediaLive is an alternative to traditional, hardware-based approaches to preparing broadcast video for delivery. By enabling easy-to-use, fully managed cloud services for broadcast video distribution, Statmux for MediaLive lets you deliver live content more flexibly and efficiently, reduce infrastructure and management costs, and deliver high-quality video with built-in reliability.
 

Benefits

Highly available

Statmux for AWS Elemental MediaLive provides built-in reliability and resiliency. Statmux resources are automatically allocated across multiple Availability Zones, enabling content providers to maintain reliable broadcast distribution without the time and expense of procuring and managing redundant infrastructure. The underlying infrastructure is automatically monitored for health, so that any potential issues are detected and resolved without disrupting live channels.

High video quality

Statmux for MediaLive lets you maintain the utmost in video quality while optimizing for fixed satellite or cable distribution bandwidth. With Statmux for MediaLive, you can tune quality settings on a per-channel basis without disruption to assure that the highest-priority channels maintain the highest quality.

Increased efficiency

Build broadcast distribution workloads in minutes and test them for a few dollars instead of waiting weeks or months for costly hardware to be delivered and set up, and deliver more channels over satellite or cable networks. For content providers that distribute traditional broadcast video as well as multiscreen linear video, Statmux for MediaLive allows you to deliver both through a single architecture.

Flexible management

Add, remove, or update live channels within the statmux based on evolving audience and business needs, easily introduce new codecs, and take advantage of multiple codecs and resolutions, even within a single mux. A simple console user interface and full API access let you control inputs and outputs, and integrated Amazon CloudWatch monitoring enables real-time visibility into video metrics and multiplexer performance.

Simplified distribution

Statmux for MediaLive lets you simplify distribution to content partners around the world. Store assets in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), process content in the cloud, and bring it on-premises for satellite distribution. Or, use AWS Elemental MediaConnect to send content through AWS and share it with distribution partners over IP networks.

How it works

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FAQs

What is statistical multiplexing (statmux)?

Statmux is a technology that allocates bits in real time among multiple live video channels, combining the encoded outputs into a multiplexed program transport stream. Statmux instantaneously adjusts the bitrate of each channel in the statmux pool to make the best use of total available bandwidth. This maximizes network efficiency by optimizing picture quality for a group of channels within a fixed total bandwidth. 

What does Statmux for MediaLive enable?

Statmux for MediaLive enables broadcasters and content owners to implement flexible and scalable workflows in AWS, generating content for distribution to headends via traditional broadcast methods. Content owners and broadcasters can now use MediaLive to support distribution systems that rely on statistical multiplexing. Combined with the advanced video encoding features and built-in resiliency of MediaLive, Statmux extracts more bandwidth capacity from the network, ensures reliable 24/7 operations, and reduces total cost of ownership for linear video delivery when deploying hundreds of channels.

What is the efficiency gain from using Statmux in MediaLive?

The efficiency gains vary depending on the codec, bandwidth, and number of channels. Typical bandwidth savings are in the 20% - 40% range depending on operating conditions.

Does this help with building my unified or converged headend in AWS?

Yes. Content and service providers have been adding OTT (ABR) encoding systems to supplement their current primary screen delivery systems. Initially, OTT was an “add-on” to the existing system, purchased from a different vendor. With the increasing importance of OTT delivery, having one system to manage all encoding helps ease the operational burden. Using Statmux for MediaLive, all of the core video processing can now happen in AWS within the same workflow.

What video codecs are supported for my channels?

H.264 (AVC) main and high profile, (4:2:0 8 bit) and H.265 (HEVC) main and high profile, (4:2:0 8 bit), up to 1080p are supported. 

How many channels or programs can be statmuxed together into a MPTS (Multiple Program Transport Stream), and what is the maximum total bitrate?

Up to 20 programs are supported currently, with up to 72 Mbps maximum MPTS total bitrate.

Can I change the channel lineup, video pool size, and reserved bitrate for a running pool?

Yes. You can add or delete channels from a pool without introducing discontinuity on the existing channels. You can also change the reserved bandwidth for a statmux pool at any time. 

Can I change the minimum or maximum bitrate of an individual channel?

Yes, you can edit the bitrate parameters of a channel at any time.

How do I manage the overall bandwidth of the MPTS?

Using either the MediaLive Console or the API, you can set a TS rate and a reserved bitrate for null packets. Statmux for MediaLive optimizes the video bitrates, taking into consideration the other audio and metadata contributions from each of the channels. 
The output of a MediaLive Statmux channel is sent to AWS Elemental MediaConnect. MediaConnect is a reliable and secure video transport service. MediaConnect supports RTP, RTP+FEC, RIST, and the Zixi protocols for securely distributing your content globally. 

Can I also migrate my Conditional Access (CA) system to AWS?

With custom integration, some CA systems can be migrated to handle encryption processing within AWS. In many cases, you may simply choose to use the CA system already located in your uplink location, encrypting video streams just before they are distributed via satellite or other distribution network. In addition, if you are distributing your content with entitlements in AWS Elemental MediaConnect, you can use SPEKE (Secure Packager and Encoder Key Exchange) for key exchange. SPEKE is an open API specification that streamlines the way supported CAS systems integrate with MediaConnect. You can encrypt the Statmux for MediaLive video that is shared using entitlements and control the permissions of content sent to your distribution partners. This enables you to build complex workflows with more granular and sophisticated conditional rights management, including time-based access, black-outs, and many other rules-based requirements. 

Pricing

For pricing information about Statmux for AWS Elemental MediaLive, visit https://aws.amazon.com/medialive/pricing/  

Documentation

For documentation about Statmux for AWS Elemental MediaLive, visit the MediaLive documentation pages.