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IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Review: "Ustream and eCDN"
https://www.trustradius.com/video-platformsIBM Cloud VideoUnspecified8.680101
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February 09, 2017

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Review: "Ustream and eCDN"

Score 9 out of 101
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version
Streaming Manager (Ustream Pro Broadcast)
Modules Used
Ustream eCDN (IBM Cloud Video Enterprise Content Delivery Network)

Overall Satisfaction with IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream)

Broadcast-only; no talk-back. There are multi-site broadcast vendors at significantly higher cost if this is what you seek.
The web interface was intuitive and the capabilities met our needs. The eCDN setup was a bit of a bear, but it performed flawlessly when deployed. We did not use Producer (our video ingest vendor did and speaks highly of it).
We used the product for the first of our quarterly town hall meetings. The 30,000-viewer hour option met our needs in that we are broadcasting to a global audience and can do so with a password-protected URL. Streaming quality was as high as our ingest rate; note that this can be variable, depending on bandwidth.

We also used the Ustream eCDN product to consolidate streams to two of our remote offices .. this ensured multiple, individual streams wouldn't clog the top of our router and impact network performance and user experience at our offices.
  • Consolidated interface: ability to manage the entire event from a single pane of glass.
  • Role-based capabilities: enabled us to assign our video capture/producer a role so he could manage his aspects of the event without my intervention.
  • Reliable network: no issues in performance with our global broadcast.
  • Mobile interface: worked like a charm as I prowled the office to ensure viewers were seeing a satisfactory experience.
  • More granular pricing; we didn't come near the 30,000-viewer hour limit. However, compared to other providers, their pricing is in line .. just not for a single event.
  • eCDN setup documentation: needs work .. did a fair bit of troubleshooting with Tier 2 support before realizing there were aspects with which only Ustream could configure (missing in the documentation).
  • Features (one to many broadcasts)
  • Price (lowest for broadcast)
Event broadcast: one-to-many viewers. Sporting, meetings, shows and so on.

Mobile consumption: nice mobile experience of a broadcast.

Archive capabilities: content is available for as long as a subscription is maintained.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Feature Ratings

Lead generation
Not Rated
Video personalization
7
eCommerce
Not Rated
Support for advertisements
Not Rated
Video SEO
Not Rated
Integration to Marketing Automation
Not Rated
Integration to Salesforce.com
Not Rated
Integration to Marketo
Not Rated
Integration to HubSpot
Not Rated
Integration to Eloqua
Not Rated
Integration to LMS
Not Rated
Video access controls
7
User management
7
Video link sharing
9
Internal video
Not Rated
External video
Not Rated
Player customization
7
Embedded videos
Not Rated
Video quality / Bandwidth controls
Not Rated
Mobile compatibility
8
A/B testing
Not Rated
Streaming quality reports
8
Per viewer tracking
8
Per video tracking
8
Video analytics dashboard
Not Rated
On-Demand video
8
Live streaming
8
Impact of streaming on network
8
Video upload & format support
Not Rated
Video library / File management
Not Rated
Video portal
Not Rated
Audience polling
Not Rated
Audience Q&A / Live chat
Not Rated
Video comments
Not Rated

Using IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream)

Users and Roles

5 - Marketing (internal and external).

Support Headcount Required

2 - Video ingest.

Video management in the Ustream web interface.

eCDN set up (Linux virtual machine and streaming site configuration).

Business Processes Supported

  • Town Hall broadcast.

Innovative Uses

  • Training. Not unexpected, not innovative, but global capability for canned sessions.

Future Planned Uses

  • Quarterly Town Hall broadcasts

Likelihood to Renew

7
If our needs change, we will re-evaluate the features we require with Ustream and other competitors.

Return on Investment

Evaluating IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) and Competitors

Products Replaced

Key Differentiators

  • Price
  • Product Usability
  • Vendor Reputation
Price was our biggest factor as we had a simple use case: single-site broadcast only, with no live talk-back. There are other providers who provide multi-site and more interactivity, but it's not what we were seeking for this event.

Evaluation Lessons Learned

We will be doing it again; no change in the process .. if we decide to enhance to multi-site talk-back, we will evaluate all vendors again.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Implementation

Implementation Details / Implementation Partner

  • Implemented in-house

Implementation Phases

Change Management Lessons

Change management was minimal

Implementation Issues

  • eCDN setup: documentation had gaps requiring Tier 2 support engagement.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Training

Training Types Used

  • Self-taught

In-Person Training

Online Training

Ease of IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Training

The product can be used without training and the site provides reasonable walk-throughs for several scenarios.

Configuring IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream)

Product Configurability

8
The configuration capabilities were adequate for our purposes; note that the product can be white-boxed .. a significant advantage.

Configuration Lessons

Allow enough time to get through the documentation when deploying.

Test with stock videos.

Use eCDN if you have a higher number of users in a physical site than you have 1gb per stream bandwidth at the top of your router.

UI Customization

Some - we have done small customizations to the interface - We wanted our branding, including a still slide prior to live broadcast and logos in various places. Customization was easy enough to do, though required a few retries (customize, click an external URL and review) to get the way we wanted it.

Extensibility and Customization

No - we have not done any custom code

Additional Customization Considerations

eCDN setup. Be sure to read the documentation and engage Tier 2 support to avoid delays.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Support

Support

9
We funded 'white glove' service as our timelines were tight and our needs were well-defined. Tier 1 and Tier 2 support were able to help us get up and running in shorter order than we would have on our own. Documentation on the eCDN product had gaps, increasing the time to resolve and created concerns about success.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Customer Support Pros and Cons

ProsCons
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
No escalation required
Immediate help available
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
None

Premium Support

Yes

Bug Resolution

Yes - eCDN documentation missed a few Ustream-side configuration items that would have enabled us to deploy ourselves. Tier 1 and Tier 2 support provided the necessary solutions for resolution.

Exceptional Examples of IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Support

From start-to-finish, with white glove service.

Using IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream)

Usability Pros and Cons

ProsCons
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Consistent
Quick to learn
Convenient
Feel confident using
None

Easy Tasks

  • Web interface: during real-time video streaming.
  • Web interface: assigning roles and permissions so others could assist with the work.
  • Ingest interface: sending live video over an internet connection to Ustream for broadcast.

Difficult Tasks

  • eCDN setup: documentation has gaps, requiring Tier 2 support to engage to troubleshoot.

Mobile Interface Availability and Impressions

Yes - On my Android with a good connection, quite well.

IBM Cloud Video (including Ustream) Reliability

Scalability

9
IBM global network.

Reliability and Availability

9
We did not have any issues during testing or broadcast.

Performance

9
The web and mobile applications loaded and streamed flawlessly.

Relationship with IBM

Pre-Sale Experience

10
Responsive and informed about their product; easy to work with and good site documentation on basic use cases.

Post-Sale Experience

10
They supported the product through our broadcast and looking forward to the next.

Key Negotiation Points

Cost and support.

Dealing with IBM

Explain your use case up front. See a demo. Ask more questions that relate to your use case.