Home ยป Live Video Streaming in Singapore: Enhancing the Audio-Visual Experience

Live Video Streaming in Singapore: Enhancing the Audio-Visual Experience

by Arturo

The period where live streaming was first introduced in Singapore took place in the early 2007 when the then Information, Communications and Arts Minister, Dr Lee Boon Yang, was shown the Opening Ceremony at the 117th IOC Session on a live webcast at the bus stop while on the way to the parliament sitting. Since then, the government has been supporting the technology, especially the Media Development Authority (MDA), which has been actively promoting and creating several forum discussions and even providing the service as well. With the existence of the MDA, this can indirectly create awareness of live webcast and would spark the interest of many individuals or organizations that video streaming is the way to go for their broadcast or even to webcast live their events. With all the different services such as the ChannelNewsAsia podcast on demand and webcast of the “live” parliament sittings, the value of webcasting and video streaming would be more felt today compared to the early days of dial-up live audio broadcast of the 90s, where it was more of a slide show simulation than a video. According to a published article of the survey done by AC Nielsen, almost 80% of internet users have watched or downloaded a video clip on the internet and 22% of them doing it on a weekly basis. With Singapore having a high internet penetration rate, this would be the right tool to convey the message to the public, or even to private sector employees.

Benefits of Live Video Streaming

Live video streaming in Singapore has numerous benefits, not only for end users but also for the service providers and also to a certain extent, even the nation. Firstly, it provides convenience and cost savings from the point of production to the end user. Before the advent of live streaming technology, videos could only be delivered in full form (i.e. once fully downloaded) and would take up a huge amount of storage space on the delivery platform. Storage and delivery of the video files incurs significant cost to Content Delivery Networks and service providers would need to choose between additional cost for CDN services or compromise on video quality. Either way, the cost is ultimately footed by the end user when they purchase a product or service. Live streaming allows the end user to view the video as it is downloaded, is not stored on the delivery platform and does not necessarily incur cost to the service provider. This results in very little or no cost to the end user and at the same time providing potential higher quality video content. For example, streaming events such as the Olympics to a Singaporean audience may take up an unbelievable amount of storage space and also incur high cost when trying to deliver the video files. By live streaming the event, the service provider can be assured the cost is kept at a minimum while viewers can still enjoy the same great quality video. This keeps both service provider and end user happy. Secondly, live streaming is the optimal solution for reaching out to wider audiences particularly where geographical and time zone differences are concerned. An ‘on demand’ video requires the end user to download the video file in its entirety before viewing can commence. This can be highly inconvenient for a viewer in a different time zone as the video may still be downloading during the time of viewing, resulting in a constantly interrupted and unsatisfying viewing experience. On the other hand, a live stream of the same video can be viewed instantly as it is downloaded. In addition to this, new ‘teaser’ live streaming technology has recently emerged where a short excerpt of a video is streamed to a delivery platform on a periodic basis while the full video is to be streamed at a later date. This may be used to promote video content and inform viewers of the video’s availability and schedule of viewing. Lastly, there may be occasional legal requirements to restrict viewership of a video to specific countries only. Live streaming technology can easily enforce this using IP based restrictions, ensuring that specific video content is only viewable by an intended audience.

Importance of Audio-Visual Experience

The experience audio visual features a vital component in a concert organized event. A superior audio-visual experience can construct measureless value to the viewer and participant with the intention of contributing to the experience and on flow a victorious consumer event. Concert planners are supposed to exploit their utilization of AV technology in concert organized events. JEL offers multiple audio-visual tech services with the intention of presenting concert coupon holders a better and more user-friendly experience to improve usability and interactivity together with audience participation. For instance, coupon holders can take pleasure in more accurate audio feedback of match comparison to onsite events. In the meantime, before stretching on to the event, they can utilize the time to watch previous compare videos during an often price range basic and good enough video streaming quality delivered in Ustream. JEL will remain to further improve on its audio-visual tech services with the intention of ensuring customers the best quality viewing and interactivity experience. At this point in time, it is more convenient to live video stream a concert compared to recording and provision of the videos for the reason that due to the quick improvement of technology, consumers are becoming more and more demanding and they have frequent high expectations of the audio-visual experience part of any event. By leveraging on live video streaming, it will prevent JEL from needing to set aside additional resources for recording and provision of videos at the same time as providing an improved experience to both consumers and participants. Live video streaming in Singapore has turned to be the norm for most consumers owing to the ability to watch video at any time and anywhere with numerous training mobile devices. In the future, JEL will force to supply consumers the ability to watch compare videos at their own availability by creating an effort to owing the recently available live video contents available on-demand.

Live Video Streaming in Singapore

The Singapore government’s push towards a connected and intelligent nation has led to various improvements in information communication technologies, live video streaming Singapore services included. The Intelligent Nation 2015 (iN2015) masterplan is a 10-year plan that aims to enhance people’s lives through information communications. One of the key initiatives under this masterplan involves the improvement of video and audio quality over the internet. This initiative, known as the digital convergence cluster aims to make Singapore a hub for digital media services, where digital media is defined as the combination of IT and telecommunications to impact information and entertainment. An example of a digital media service would be video streaming, be it live or on demand. Measures are taken to ensure Singapore’s infocomm infrastructure is able to support such services. This includes the implementation of a Next Generation National Infocomm Infrastructure, where high speed and pervasive infocomm connectivity are brought about using cost-effective and innovative methods. The key motivation behind such an initiative is to exploit the growing demand for digital media services. Jurong International Secondary School would be able to benefit from the digital media services when conducting its ‘Sunburst 2008’ long-term technology plan.

The history of communication in Singapore is largely shaped by their geographical location and physical size. With high internet penetration rates, its people have widely used online communication technologies. Singapore’s well-developed infrastructure provides a platform for various communication technologies to prosper. Live video streaming Singapore service has gained widespread acceptance in Singapore. The convenience and flexibility in information dissemination that it provides have appealed to different organizations for various reasons. Over the years, many improvements to this service are seen and the factors that led to these improvements are discussed in the following few subtopics.

Advancements in Technology

Responsive Streaming Over the Top (OTT) In a world of mobile internet access, people want to be able to watch live video at any time no matter where they are. This has bred the future of video streaming with OTT services. OTT services provide video content over the internet, bypassing traditional distribution methods. This allows users to watch video content on any internet-connected device from anywhere. The next phase of OTT services will be “responsive streaming” which will automatically adjust the video quality to best suit the user’s internet connection and device that they are watching from. Although this technology is still in development, there is great potential for future live streaming services between Singapore and the rest of the world and also an increase in local Singapore OTT services aiming to provide global content to all devices.

VR and AR technology The last decade has seen vast improvements to VR technology and VR live streaming. Although it is not currently a service available in Singapore, as the technology advances it could soon become a new and immersive way to experience events and content streaming from around the world. The idea of being able to live stream a concert or sporting event to a virtual environment is an exciting future possibility for video streaming and the constantly evolving Singapore technology sector.

AV1 codec The AV1 codec is designed with internet streaming in mind. As video streaming around the world continues to increase, especially in countries like Singapore, this new video codec will make it easier for companies to provide high-quality video content to users. This opens up new possibilities for live streaming video in Singapore and sets a new standard for video quality online. Another benefit of the AV1 codec is that it is royalty-free, competition to the HEVC codec which is the current leader in video compression. The AV1 codec aims to bring open and high-quality video to the entire internet, much like its predecessors VP8 and VP9 which sought to improve video communication. AOMedia boasts the support of AV1 codec from major companies and platforms such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Netflix, Twitch, and also the development of multiple hardware products to support the AV1 codec.

Growing Popularity

One reason for the surge in video streaming is the increased availability of more user-friendly streaming tools. Whether it’s 360-degree video, higher resolution, or even access to the technology to create your own content, it’s becoming simpler and more convenient to both make and watch the content you want. Social media platforms have enabled an easier way for content creators to share their content with a wider audience by livestreaming. In education and healthcare, there has been a more “two-way” method in using video, by using it for real-time conversations such as telehealth consultations, or having students interact with it via live online lectures. Live streaming has even been used to raise awareness for certain causes or to market events, with services like live streaming a marathon event or a fundraising “telethon”. It’s a far cry from when streaming was mostly a way for organizations to just broadcast their own events.

Key Players in the Industry

Today there are a variety of companies providing different services when it comes to live video streaming. CDNetworks is a company that provides live video streaming Singapore solutions that can provide live and on-demand video streaming services to its customers across the globe. Its flexible solutions can be customized and are compatible with various internet platforms. Another well-known company is Digital Rapids, which offers end-to-end solutions for live streaming that are tailored to the needs of the client. The solutions include content acquisition, video transformation, and live streaming. Digital Rapids has recently been chosen by NBC to provide live streaming for the Beijing Olympics. Level 3 is a company that has been in the business of live video streaming for quite some time and has a global network that can deliver streaming services in any location imaginable using their private network. These are just a few of the companies in the live streaming industry, and there are many more out there, big and small, each offering their own solutions to cater to the needs of the client. Whether they are providing live streaming for events, video conferencing, or education, every company has their own special twist to their services.

Enhancing the Audio-Visual Experience

High-quality video production The authors appear to have made little distinction between an enhanced audio-visual experience and traditional video production. It is pointed out that a high-quality video production is essential in generating interest and maintaining attention of viewers. This is certainly true. Traditional video production has typically involved the use of heavy and expensive equipment that is not suited to field operation. As a result, this has generally restricted high-quality video production to well-funded media groups and a select few professionals. However, video production technologies have experienced rapid development in recent years and have seen a dramatic shift towards digital. Increasing capabilities of computers have meant digital video is now easier to produce, edit, and store. This is particularly suited to field operation and has made it more accessible to a wider range of users. The authors make no mention of streaming technology here, which is an oversight, as it provides a means of distributing video content to a global audience. In addition, streaming technology can now support live transmission of high-quality video, and there are numerous examples in the industry of where this is being applied. The best example of which would be live streaming of sport events and e-sports. Advances in video compression technologies have also allowed for high-quality transmission over lower bit-rates, thus increasing accessibility. Visual latency, however, is raised as a potential issue for the near future. With audio latency rates expected to reduce, there is a risk of a noticeable disparity between audio and video synchronization. This would be particularly prevalent in live streaming where the real-time nature of audio could highlight any delays in video. I found this to be an interesting point as I’ve noticed in my own experiences of streaming that audio latency can often amplify the perception of video latency. This may not have been an issue in past years, with the dominance of dial-up internet connections and early broadband services, where the low bit-rate of video streams essentially made them a slideshow of still frames. But for future internet protocols, it is certainly an issue worth addressing.

High-Quality Video Production

The development of digital video by the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) has provided a remarkable change in the technology used to deliver digital video over the internet. With the development of the MPEG 4 standard, a variety of tools making use of its capabilities have emerged. This allows for a much greater degree of flexibility in terms of what can be achieved in the area of delivering video over the internet. One of the more popular tools in use today is the advent of live streaming of video over the internet. Many providers have added live video streaming in Singapore as an additional feature to their websites to bring added value to a product or service. An example of this would be the marketing of sporting events where a pay-per-view feature is employed. The previous method employed for delivering video online proved to be very limiting. The onset of Digital Subscription Lines (DSL) and Cable Modems has helped to accelerate the process of migrating from using low quality video using a small window to high quality video using much larger viewing interfaces. A lot of companies today provide video previews of new upcoming movie releases. By using existing tools such as Microsoft Media Player or Real Media, the user can be given a richer viewing experience by selecting options in the player such as going full screen. However, full screen viewing today still yields a less than desirable quality for videos streamed with these tools. High quality video streaming has been achieved with MPEG 2 and MPEG-4 video and it is rapidly increasing in convergence with broadband connections.

Immersive Audio Solutions

Due to the close relationship between audio and video elements, a large amount of research in live video streaming Singapore focuses on improving the audio experience. A true audio-visual experience is only immersive and engaging when high quality audio is delivered, thus it is essential in live video streaming to improve audio quality and provide a better experience. Research in this area covers wide ground, and is quite diverse, ranging from recording and playback of live musical performances and spatial audio, to enhancing speech quality in teleconferencing. These various aspects of research can be loosely categorized into sound capture and sound rendering (or playback). With audio being a single channel signal, much of the capture and rendering techniques for audio will be similar to those for video. A simple means of improving audio quality is to increase the bit rate of the audio stream, or to use a higher quality audio codec. However, a more interesting method of improving audio quality can be to increase the amount of information captured in the audio stream from the live event. An example of this is audio texture analysis which identifies sound events that have a significant impact on the overall sound of a recording, such as applause or laughter. With this information sound events can be added to the audio mix at a later time to give a more realistic recreation of the live event.

Interactive Features and Engaging Content

Interactive features involve server-side and client-side software for live and on-demand video streaming. It allows broadcasters to integrate many different types of interactive applications and services with the video streaming presentation. Using interactive television, viewers can interact with the televised content as well as the providers of the content. This can be done through consumer electronics, internet, mobile, kiosk, and many other media platforms. iTV services can be delivered using a broadcast method (such as satellite or cable TV) as well as a broadband method (such as the internet or mobile phone). Broadcast-based iTV services are more limited as it typically uses a return path limited to set-top boxes. This means that providers only allow viewers to interact with the content that has been broadcasted. On the other hand, a broadband connection to the internet allows two-way communication for iTV services. This creative new method of viewing television can be used in conjunction with live video streaming for special events, pay-per-view, and on-demand content. High-profile action can be enhanced by allowing viewers to vote or interact with the event. For high-rating shows, iTV allows the same show to gain advertising revenue by long-term interaction with a viewer.

Seamless Integration with Social Media

By integrating live streaming with social media, businesses can reach their customer base much more effectively. People who receive news from social media tend to share it even further if the content is interesting. Live streaming a video to social media when a company starts a major event can act as a notification for those who follow the company’s social media page. Even if a user was not notified, the shared video may appear as interesting content to the user and make them aware of the event. Having a comment system on live streaming can also act as a mini forum for attendees to discuss the event, leave responses, and provide real-time feedback. With our “seamless” solution, the video may be automatically posted in the video feed after the live stream ends and saved as a video file on the social media page, providing an alternative to watching recorded video.

Businesses through social media platforms have become more prevalent as days go by, with some being active and able to effectively reach their customer base, gaining traction mostly for their product sales. Live video streaming has been a method for some organizations in the past to reach out to audiences during high-demand events. However, its effectiveness can be increased even further, and a Singapore live streaming company knows the best approach for it.


In the five years (and counting) of providing streaming services, there has been a significant uptake in the use of this technology. This can be seen in the escalation in the number of lectures recorded. We started with a handful of recordings in 2004 and currently there are over 100 recordings made in a typical semester. Anecdotal feedback from students and staff from various departments indicates that webcasted materials are well-received. This is supported by statistics showing high usage of these materials, with some hitting as high as a few thousand views per webcast. A recent poll of NUS students has shown that students are increasingly receptive to the use of technology in education. It is expected that the demand for streaming services will only continue to grow in the future.

Streaming technologies developed at NUS are robust and cater to a wide variety of needs. Our initial focus was to enable viewing of lectures for students who were unable to attend (such as during the SARS period). From informal feedback, we know that local students also benefit from this technology by allowing them to review complex materials at their own pace. It also meets the needs of the lifelong learner who may want to learn about a new topic without having to attend a course on campus. More recently, we have explored live webcasting of events on campus.

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