What You Need to Know About Encoding in 2024
The old adage goes that streaming is essentially the process of taking good video and degrading it for distribution. The nicer and more technical term for that process is "transcoding," and where those industry players shouldering the heaviest transcoding load—that is, delivering the highest-volume live and on-demand streams—turn for transcoding is in a permanent state of flux. The latest projections show old-warhorse AVC entering deep decline, AV1 making major inroads, HEVC on the rise, and various patent pools bringing structure or chaos to the scene, depending on who you ask.

Today, choosing transcoding options isn't so much about the latest codec flavor of the month as it is about conserving bits, keeping costs down, striking a practical cloud/on-prem balance, improving sustainability and energy efficiency, and maintaining high-performance and playback compatibility. What does the transcoding landscape look like as 2023 rolls into 2024, and what do content providers need to know to make sound encoding decisions that will still look good in 2025?


Steve Nathans-Kelly
VP & Editor-in-Chief
Streaming Media

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