In its raw or uncompressed form, the video can be quite heavy. It’s quite difficult to upload and share videos in their raw form. Also video streaming protocols are quite dependent on the type of device/browser where the video is playing. This is where video encoding comes into play. As the heavy raw files are compressed into a lighter version while maintaining most of the original quality and different protocols are encoded to adhere to the streaming protocols required.
What is Video Encoding?
Video encoding is basically the process of converting raw or uncompressed video files into the required format. It is quite often used interchangeably with video transcoding, but there’s a slight difference. While video encoding converts raw files to another format. Video transcoding converts one format to another.
Video encoding is a lossy process, as not all the information originally in the video is kept. The final version of the video is the best approximation of the original video.
Why would you need to encode your videos?
Encoding your videos can help you in two parts, i.e. streaming, and compatibility.
With streaming, the video encoding makes it way easier to broadcast your videos online. The compression with encoding ensures lower bandwidth consumption along with better video quality.
Compatibility is another reason why you would need to encode your videos. Different devices support different video formats, so you need to encode your videos to those specific formats. Even with different browser engines, you’d need different formats.
This is why, while uploading your videos online, you need to make sure that your videos are available in all the different formats for browsers as well as different quality. So that your users can stream videos seamlessly on any browser, regardless of their internet speed.
Other reasons to encode your videos can be to reduce file size, change resolution, change the audio format, or to make videos of different video bitrate,
What Is Video Codec?
Video codecs are software that is used for the compression and playback of video files. The word “codec” stands for coder and decoder. They compress the original video and make it lighter for storage and later it is decompressed for viewing.
Video streaming involves both audio and video codecs, along with video metadata. Each video format has its own video codec, such as H264, H265, HEVC, VP8, etc. Also an audio codec such as MP3, AAC, and WMA.
H.264 or AVC is the most widely used video codec. At the same file size, it provides a much better video bitrate than its predecessors.
Other popular video codecs are:
H.265 or HVEC: It gives half the bitrate than H.264 and is good for playback high-resolution videos. But the downside is that it uses about three times more resources than H.264. Also, even after some time of its release, it’s still not as popular as H.264,
VP9: It is a royalty-free and open-source codec developed by Google. It gives half the bitrate of VP8 and like H.265 it is also good for high-resolution videos and live streaming. But it is more difficult to encode and is also not widely supported
In simpler terms, a video needs to meet certain criteria in order to play on different devices or browsers. To convert them into the right format, video encoding is done to make sure that the video is playable regardless of the device.
Cloud Video Encoding
Having an in house video encoding solution certainly has its own advantages. As it gives you better control over your workflow than any other solution online. This certainly helps in cases where the video files are quite large and need a lot of bandwidth. This is ideal for any business with a good team and infrastructure.
In case you are a media platform or an e-learning platform, who wants to host their video online without facing the hassle of all the tech part. It’s best that you opt for a video hosting service, which takes care of the encoding for you.
Business video hosting services like VdoCipher take care of it automatically whenever you upload videos on their platform. The raw videos are encoded into all the relevant formats and sizes. Making it easier for you to host videos, by just clicking the upload button, without having to care about video encoding, codecs and so.
This further saves the cost of creating, maintaining, and upgrading your in-house solution to encode your videos.
Supercharge Your Business with Videos
At VdoCipher we maintain the strongest content protection for videos. We also work extremely hard to deliver the best viewer experience. We'd love to hear from you, and help boost your video streaming business.