September 28th, 2012
Using webcasting as part of an enterprise video program is a growing trend among businesses, especially as consumerization takes a stronger hold in the enterprise. As video's role expands and more organizations become dependent on webcasting solutions, the decision as to whether the system should be hosted in the cloud or using on-site hardware becomes important. Both options offer benefits for businesses, but according to a recent iMedia Connection report, the gains offered by cloud computing makes the option a prime choice for many businesses.
Cloud webcasting offers flexibility
Addressing the needs of users working with a diverse range of computing devices is a growing problem in the enterprise. One of the advantages of turning to the cloud is its ability to deliver just about any technological resource through the web. In the case of webcasting, a cloud-based solution can make it much easier to transport content to end users working on smartphones, tablets or traditional PCs, the report said.
Furthermore, traditional webcasting hardware forces users to be connected within the same network as the core hardware used to support the event, the report said. This means that businesses can readily have employees view an event from within the office or a branch that connects to the core hardware. However, remote workers and those in offices not connected to the data center housing the webcasting system cannot connect to the meeting. Cloud computing makes the webcast available to anybody with an internet connection, allowing for a much more accessible usage model.
On some levels, cloud infrastructure can be extremely difficult to manage. However, companies using the cloud for webcasting generally do not have to deal with those issues, as they fall on the vendor. The report explained that businesses using a cloud webcasting system are able to make system updates to the cloud instance and not have to make it on each user version of the application. All of the data is stored in the cloud as well, alleviating the hardware burden and ensuring that system requirements of end-user devices do not need to be too high.
Benefits of keeping things on premise
Deploying an internal webcasting platform instead of using a cloud system presents some challenges when it comes to management and accessibility, but it can also provide performance options that make it worth the difficulty. Cloud computing solutions are capable of offering high-performance capabilities, but it can be easier to accomplish this goal with premise-based systems that often have more dedicated resources.
Regardless of whether you are building your webcasting system using the cloud or with premise-based hardware, the burden on the network can be considerable. Furthermore, the nature of video is such that traditional networking solutions do not always get the job done. Instead, using a video-specific technology, such as an enterprise content delivery network, can enable much more efficient network operations.