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2023 Media Technology Summit

Open Caching: A Better Way to Deliver Content

March 21, 2023

Open Caching: A Better Way to Deliver Content

(Based on Open Caching: An Innovative Way for Content Providers to Serve Customers)

The world is more online than ever before. Cisco predicts that around two-thirds of the global population will have access to the internet before the year is over. That’s a lot of people surfing the web, growing businesses, and streaming content. With all of these new internet users, traditional ways of streaming content, video content in particular, are quickly becoming overwhelmed. So, what’s the solution?

The Streaming Video Technology Alliance (SVTA) has an answer. They have introduced a new standards-based platform called “open caching” which will change the way media companies distribute content, and how consumers receive and experience it. Not only will distribution be faster and more streamlined, but those who consume content will experience less freezing and buffering, as well as a better bitrate for clearer images.

Open caching can accomplish this by simply avoiding proprietary systems while still using existing internet infrastructures to bring content closer to the consumer. But what does that mean? A proprietary system, in this scenario, is a streaming source outside the bounds of a local internet service provider. Think Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, etc. Open caching takes the content these organizations create, stores it with local internet service providers, and distributes it through said providers rather than directly from the source of the content. This means that content doesn’t have to travel nearly as far to reach consumers, thereby eliminating many of the issues that cause poor streaming performance.

As amazing as this sounds, there are several hurdles. While much of the existing internet infrastructure can be used for this process, new infrastructures will be needed to ensure a seamless transition. Additionally, a move toward open caching will require cooperation from all parties involved, including the proprietary systems the standard seeks to move away from. This means giving content providers a worthy incentive to participate, though one could argue that better streaming quality will attract more users and, thus, make these companies more money.

In a world where internet access is constantly expanding, media providers need more efficient ways to deliver content to consumers. According to streamingmedia.com, video streaming accounts for around 80% of internet traffic. With more and more people streaming every day, current internet infrastructures are under a lot of pressure. Open caching can relieve some of the pressure, making distribution easier for providers and video quality better for consumers. Widespread use of this new standard is still far off. However, once it’s implemented, people will wonder how we ever used the internet without it.


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