tirsdag 2. februar 2010

Content distribution startup 3crowd wants to shake up online video

The un-profitability of video sites has become a cliche — high infrastructure costs and advertising challenges have combined in a way that even ostensible winners, like YouTube, can’t necessarily make the finances work (though Google keeps saying that YouTube will be profitable real soon). On the startup side, new video companies hoping to reach consumers are pretty scarce. But Barrett Lyon, founder of startup called 3crowd, said he wants to change the economics of online video.
San Mateo, Calif.-based 3crowd is starting with two products, CrowdMonitor and CrowdDirector, which help companies manage the content delivery networks they use to distribute their videos. Instead of sending all their content through one CDN, which can become “a single point of failure,” or struggling to manage traffic across a couple CDNs, 3crowd allows you to efficiently distribute your traffic across a “crowd” of CDNs. Using monitors placed throughout the network, 3crowd load balances your traffic based on factors like performance and pricing.
The company will be announcing a number of other products that push its vision forward in the coming months. Lyon didn’t get specific, but he said one of his goals is to remove the pricing barriers for online video are “holding innovation back.”
“If bandwidth becomes affordable to the point where people make money from running video, that’s going to be a huge change to all kinds of stuff,” he said.
Lyon has experience in this field, having previously founded content delivery network BitGravity, as do his angel investors Kevin Rose and Jay Adelson, who co-founded Digg and video site Revision3.
Oh, and here’s where the name comes from: 3crowd is actually Lyon’s third startup, and the third startup for a number of other members of his team.

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