Swedish Ultra-Low-Latency CDN Provider Raises $1.6 Million USD
The Swedish company Realsprint has closed a round of funding to accelerate its CDN development in 2021 and 2022. With a team of around 25 people, the rather small company has chosen to focus on a clear niche for its product named Vindral: High-quality streaming at low latency.
"With most ultra-low-latency products aiming for realtime performance we have chosen to differentiate from that, and successfully so. Adding a little bit of buffer goes a long way. 1 second means a world of difference in realistic use-cases, especially in regions where rural Internet connectivity induces jitter and latency. Instead of video degrading, these viewers retain a stable high quality experience," says Daniel Alinder, Chief Executive Officer at Realsprint.
Betting on the Mainstream
Among the verticals that require both low-latency and quality are sports, remote surveillance or inspections and entertainment. The Realsprint take on these is lowering latency to around 1 second while retaining quality and stability.
"It is of course possible to configure for 0.5 second latency as well, but none of our clients has chosen to go that low. More common focus areas are image quality and synchronized playout. A game show with host-crowd interaction does not require realtime latency. Keeping all viewers in sync, around 1 second, while maintaining full-HD quality is a common request that we see," says Alinder.
This approach is what the investors Partnerinvest Norr and TheGamingInvestor.com view as the ultimate recipe for live streaming in the years to come.
Niclas Åström, Chief Product Officer at Realsprint, elaborates on this niche: "We call it the Sweet Spot. Vindral is built to put clients in charge of their own sweet spot in terms of buffer and quality. While we are highly impressed by technologies such as WebRTC we are aiming for the mainstream where latency is only one of the parameters."
It is undoubtedly a different approach, as most of Realsprint's competitors aim for realtime. The picture becomes more complete when looking at aspects beyond the performance itself.
"As much as we as tech companies like to take pride in the numbers and theoretical results, there is a business reality to consider. How do our products fit in the prospective clients’ workflows? How well do we align with budgets? How well does it scale? These types of questions require a reality check and may impact decisions to a greater extent than pushing latency down to the absolute limit," Alinder adds.
How far Realsprint will reach in their endeavour remains to be seen. Founded in 2014, their current client line-up mentioned on realsprint.com features Sotheby's, Hong Kong Jockey Club and IcelandAir. The injection of funds will be used to develop new functionality and optimize the Vindral product family for OEM partnerships.
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