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Comparing the 9 Best Live Video Streaming Platforms of 2022

Here's our analysis of the 9 best live video streaming platforms in 2022 that include simple live video solutions and those for large enterprise use cases
by Sabika Tasneem and Shahan Zafar Updated on May 15, 2022

Interactive live streaming is the trend these days. There are countless live streaming platforms in the market. Choosing the best one can be a very strenuous task – the answer is not straightforward.

According to Statista, the viewing hours of live videos rose from 629 million hours in 2019 to 916 million hours in 2020. That percentage is increasing each year, and more rapidly because of the dreaded COVID-19

And this increase in demand is not limited to entertainment use cases. Here is a surprising webinar statistic: Research reveals that webinars are attended weekly by around 54% of B2B professionals.

Both your organization's internal teams and external stakeholders might prefer watching live streams for various purposes. You must not lose out on the countless benefits of live streams.

But how to choose which live streaming platform is the best for your particular corporate use cases. This article will help you do just that!

TL;DR

Chances are, you are probably overwhelmed and asking questions like:

  • Why should I not use Zoom for carrying out my live streams? (Well, the question should be: Is Zoom a live streaming platform? The answer is simple: Zoom is not a live streaming platform – just an online meeting solution that can go as far as supporting small-scale live webinars)

  • Why go for a broadcast-grade live streaming platform? (Want an audience in 1000s or more? Reach continents near and far? Without disruptions? A broadcast-grade secure live streaming platform is the way to go)

  • How to securely live stream for your internal teams to discuss business-critical confidential information? (Enterprise-grade security is a must-have in your live stream platform)

  • What other factors to consider when choosing streaming platform comparison? Ease of use, optimized streaming for adaptive and compatible streaming, and security are some critical factors to name a few.

  • What are the differences between the top live streaming platforms and which solution do we recommend? Here is the list of platforms we will compare. Click below and jump to the solution you want to know more about:

9 Best Live Streaming Platforms

  1. VIDIZMO (recommended for businesses conducting internal & extern lives)

  2. YouTube (recommended for content creators looking for content monetization)

  3. Vimeo

  4. Kaltura

  5. Dacast

  6. Brightcove

  7. Panopto

  8. StreamYard

  9. IBM Cloud Video

     

Ready to Go On-Air?

Going on air on a live streaming platform-1

 

What is a Live Streaming Platform?

Live streaming is when you create and share videos with your audience to watch in real-time. A live video streaming platform has the complete infrastructure to allow you to deliver an optimized live video feed in real-time from a recording device to a player at the user's end.

Here is our simple definition of Live Streaming:

"Process of transmitting video content in real-time over the internet."

Though, this definition may not reflect a live stream completely. Now modern live streaming platforms also record these live videos and make them available as on-demand videos for future playback.

The concept is quite similar to video conferencing. But unlike video conferencing tools, in live streaming, the communication takes place one way – interaction is limited to live chat, quizzes and other elements.

Live streaming also is capable of accommodating a much larger audience depending on how scalable your live streaming platform is. This gives you the power of streaming large-scale events in broadcast-grade quality with your stream accessible globally.

Learn more about the process behind video streaming in our blog on video streaming.  

Or read our blog on what live streaming is, how it works and the process behind it.

Live Video Streaming Infographic

More on Live Streaming in VIDIZMO

 

What Features to Consider for Live Streaming Platforms Comparison?

There are various types of live streaming platforms out there, and to compare them, here's a list of the features that we think are important:

  • Ease of Use

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a live streaming platform is that it must have an easy and adaptable user interface. So that even a newly inducted user, can orchestrate the capabilities he or she needs.

  • Optimized for Varying Internet Speeds

We went over to G2, TrustRadius, and Capterra and looked at the poor reviews. Interestingly we found out that most of the low-rated reviews were complaining about internet connectivity issues, buffering, playback issues, etc.

Most live streaming platforms don't offer capabilities for video streaming optimization, making the playback experience a mess with continuous buffering and loading errors.

It's important to look for automatic video transcoding capabilities in a live streaming platform, where multiple video quality options (240p, 720p, and so on) are created for users to choose from.

There can even be automatic quality selection using adaptive bitrate streaming (just like YouTube).

 

For corporate networks, it's important to look for a solution that intelligently routes videos through means of an eCDN or else your network will be overloaded.

  • Security

Cybersecurity Ventures predicts cybercrime will cost the world upwards of $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, up from $6 trillion in 2021.

Source: Cybersecurity Ventures Official Annual Cybercrime Report

It is important to secure your live stream to certain authorized individuals only.

This is if your live stream has confidential data – a breach of which could lead to a breach of compliance, loss of reputation, competitive disadvantage, etc. Say a financial planning meeting recording with restricted viewing for the financial team only.

 

Create Your YouTube-like Video Portal Today!  With Our Free Trial

  • Scalability

It is entirely possible, for your organization to increase the number of people it wants in the live stream. There could also be random surges in viewership.

Therefore, it's important to look for a platform with a live streaming infrastructure that uses intelligent load balancing to scale up servers as viewership increases. All being done automatically, without you having to break your head.

"Stream to 10s or 1000s, Your Platform Should Be Able to Do it All"

  • Interactivity Converting Passive Viewers Into Active Listeners

Being able to create engaging and captivating content is your first and foremost priority while conducting a live event.

For that purpose, choose a live streaming platform with different interactivity options, like Q&A windows, live chat functionality, quizzes, polls, surveys, etc.

  • Modern Live Streaming Tech Infrastructure

It's important to look for a live video streaming platform that uses the latest streaming technologies to ensure compatibility with all devices, browsers, and streaming servers.

An important thing to look at here is a live streaming platform that uses HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) protocol, MPEG-DASH or Microsoft Smooth Streaming for streaming as this is supported by most infrastructure and devices. 

  • Deployment Options (Not for All)

This is not an important consideration unless you are a large enterprise that operates under strict compliance and security requirements or prefers directly managing cloud services.

However, if you are an organization with stringent security needs or are operating in highly regulated industries like healthcare or regions like China or Europe, you would most certainly need to look for a secure video platform that meets major compliance.

It must also allow you to host video data and the live streaming infrastructure in your Azure, AWS or any other secure cloud your choice, or a platform that supports on-premise video streaming in your own data center.

Read | AWS Services for Live Streaming

 

Before we compare: Generally there are 2 ways to do a live streaming platform comparison:

  • You can either opt for a live streaming platform - one where you connect an encoder and broadcast your stream.

  • Or you could use a simple webcast solution - like the one offered by Zoom.  

 

The 9 Best Live Streaming Platforms of 2022

Based on the criteria mentioned previously, we have compiled a list of the best 9 live streaming platforms.

These platforms stream using modern streaming protocols, and you need to push or pull a stream through means of an encoder. This helps you show the feed from multiple cameras, insert a video during a live stream, or stream a live meeting between panelists.

  1. VIDIZMO

    VIDIZMO is an easy-to-use live streaming platform - also well-known as a Gartner-recognized enterprise video platform (kind of like a YouTube for enterprise).

    It offers top-notch secure live streaming capabilities for both internal and external audiences. It is especially useful for conducting enterprise-wide private live streams.

    VIDIZMO Live Streaming Platform

    See a Live Demo of  What You Can Create Using VIDIZMO

    Within live streaming itself, the platform offers a breadth of functionalities with multitudes of benefits.

    You can choose to stream securely inside an organization or broadcast live events to large audiences publicly. Do everything from educational webinars to company town halls to industry conferences.

    US Embassy Ottawa

    The US State Department Uses VIDIZMO for Secure Internal Live Streaming - Read More on This Story

    Top Features

    • Offers scalable live streaming in the cloud, with automatic load balancing to handle random surges in viewership. This makes it a good option when used to stream video to large audiences - even in 1000s or more.

    • You can set access permissions to ensure that any private stream does not get watched by restricted parties. You can limit access to specific individuals, groups, entire departments, the entire organization, or the public.

    • Provides live streaming, both on cloud and on-premise.

    • For on-premise live streaming, you can stream internally on your intranet without the need for users to be connected to any external network.

    • The identity of users within the organization is synced with your SSO or IAM system through integrations and SCIM.   

    • Benefit from leading technologies such as the compatible HLS protocol, automatic transcoding, adaptive bitrate streaming, and CDN to ensure smooth playback to global audience on all devices and browsers under all bandwidth conditions.

    • Global video delivery supported (yes, that even includes China video hosting)

    • It offers an eCDN technology, where you can cache videos on internal servers and distribute them locally, thereby reducing the load on your internet connection.

    • You can live stream online meetings through Zoom, MS Teams, Cisco Webex, etc. through RTMP.

    • Allow audience to engage through live chat, Q&A, and interactive elements such as quizzes, handouts, and surveys.

    • Video data is tracked to generate analytics presented in easy-to-read dashboards - allows geographical heat map, device usage, engagement metrics, and individual logs.

    • You can set up backup live streams for your users to switch to if the main live stream fails by any chance. 

    • Supports live streaming from drones and CCTV cameras.

    • Record your live streams and make them immediately available as on-demand videos for future playback on the same platforms as all your other on-demand videos. 

    • All live streams are end-to-end encrypted with FIPS 140-2 standards.

    • Securely live stream while fulfilling all the major regional and industrial compliances like GDPR, HIPAA, CJIS, and many more.

    • Offers low latency HLS for live streaming.

    • Provides live streaming, both on cloud and on-premise.

    • For on-premise streaming, you can stream internally without the need for users to be connected to the internet.

    • It offers a video portal, where you can host multiple live streams and users can join the ones that they want.

    • Custom brand the video portal and the video player through which the stream plays – add logo, use your brand colors, and make other changes through custom CSS.

    • You can play a stream from an incoming HLS URL or schedule pre-recorded webinars or on-demand videos to stream live at a particular time.

      VIDIZMO Top-Notch Customer Support

    View Pricing

    We Offer Much More!  Learn About All Features

     

    The good part of VIDIZMO is that it offers a complete enterprise video platform as well.

    So it's good for your organization if you want to stream on-demand videos (say for training or recorded work meetings) and conduct frequent live sessions (such as a town hall).

    Record these sessions and then publish them to your on-demand video library. These on-demand videos can be restricted to an internal audience, to specific users or groups, or can be set anonymous.

    You can choose to use VIDIZMO as a separate live streaming platform as is. Or in combination with on-demand streaming.

    VIDIZMO Live Streaming Case Study

    VIDIZMO helps XcitED, one of the biggest EdTech startup events to go live virtually in 2020Read the Complete Case Study

  2. YouTube

    With immense market penetration, YouTube is the most popular video sharing platform in the entire world with more than 2.3 billion monthly active users.

    A Screenshot of YouTube Live Studio

    Being the second most visited website globally, it allows your live stream to reach a large audience. This makes it highly suitable for public broadcasts; mostly by influencers and content creators looking to monetize their content.

    With all the significantly positive qualities mentioned below, YouTube also comes with its own share of drawbacks (mostly for businesses – especially for streaming private live content) of latency issues, privacy issues, limited analytics features, compliance issues, limited scalability, and limited live streaming time. 

    Top Features

    • It is free to use – cost-effective for small creators

    • Monetizing a YouTube live stream is also possible by allowing ads to be run during the live streams.  

    • If your video is featured on YouTube live, it is recommended to viewers if YouTube's algorithm deems it worthy of their interests. This increases the possibility of reaching out to a larger audience. Great for a marketing use case!

    • Not broadcast-grade quality – you can't put in text overlays, add multiple camera feeds or background playlists, etc.

    • Live streams can be recorded and made available as an on-demand video for your audiences. 

    • It offers live DVR, such that those joining midway during a stream can rewind back and view what they missed.

    • It can be viewed by anyone out there and the streams aren't the most secure – not at the level most businesses require. This is not a good option if you need to stream confidential information to an internal audience.

    • There are third-party websites that allow viewers to download your content. This means your content files can exist in someone else's database.  

    • It only supports basic video analytics such as the number of views, direct engagement, etc.  

    • According to YouTube terms and conditions, when uploading content on their site; you are giving them rights to essentially distribute and make countless copies of your content too. 

    • There are various stringent compliances applicable on video data that YouTube's public platform fails to meet, such as YouTube videos not being obedient to Europe's GDPR(General Data Protection Regulation). 

    • Scalability is limited to only small audiences. 

    • Backup recording is not provided, for the live video streams you produce. 

    • Quality is compromised when there is an increasing number of viewers. 

    • Live streaming time is limited.

  3. Livestream

    Livestream by Vimeo was a video sharing platform initially created for a platform for creative professionals. As its lifecycle progressed, it veered towards the side of catering businesses for on-demand video streaming for external audiences.

    Vimeo Live Streaming

    Vimeo proceeded to acquire a live streaming platform, "Mogulus" and merged it with Vimeo's on-demand video streaming services. It is an ad-free alternative to YouTube, with an enterprise version available. However, Vimeo's live streaming service is only available in Vimeo premium, enterprise and OTT plans.

    The platform has a few drawbacks, though (listed below). With just a 2.6 rating on a 5-point scale on Trust Pilot, it is certainly expected not to get the most optimal experience from Vimeo. It does, however, have lots of public users and has proven to be one of the most popular platforms for UGC (User-Generated-Content).  

    Vimeo is also a simple live streaming SaaS application, with no options to choose where your data is stored and how it's handled – no cloud deployments or on-premise deployments. Large organizations may require this. 

    Top Features

    • You can run your live streams on multiple social platforms simultaneously through SimulCast.  

    • You can keep your viewers engaged with the interactivity provided with live Q&A, live polls, audience chat, email capture and custom calls to action.

    • There are only basic security options available (that too only in the Vimeo enterprise package) that only provide SSO integration and IP/Geo-blocking.

    • You may even keep track of everything with the analytics of each video you stream live. 

    • Does not support video delivery in China.

    • As mentioned previously, there have been many bad reviews, and their support is not exactly top-notch either for their live streaming functionality.  

    • You are forced to subscribe to the highest-paid plan if you wish to store a considerable number of videos. 

    • Each live stream is limited to only 12 hours.

    Learn more about Vimeo and alternatives here.

  4. Kaltura

    Kaltura is another enterprise video platform that supports live streaming functionality.

    Kaltura live streaming platform

    Disclaimer: it is an open-source software – requires a great amount of technical expertise to stitch together this platform, deploy it, and conduct a live stream. (Having an in-house tech team dedicated to doing it all is a must)

    However, that results in the platform being customizable with enterprise-level security.

    Top Features

    • Supports both internal and external streaming.

    • Straightforward user interface.

    • Rich content creation tools.

    • Supports third-party encoders for live streaming. 

    • Difficult admin panel navigation.  

    • Integrates well with third-party software.

    • Enterprise-grade security.

    • Self-service customer support (no professional services team and no phone/chat support available for queries and consultations) – your team will have to go over the detailed documentation to understand the platform and run it.

    • The deployment process is very slow-going.  

    • No China video hosting is possible.

    • Private live streams within an organization's admissible screens are also possible.  

  5. Dacast

    Dacast offers the essential capabilities needed to carry out live video streams. It's a great platform if you need to stream to large public audiences or monetize your content through integration with a paywall.

    Dacast Live Streaming

    It does lack the features to securely stream videos internally and is also not the best for recording and streaming your recorded sessions as on-demand videos later.

    It also lacks certain live streaming features such as a live chat and the ability to set up backup streams.

    Another simple live streaming SaaS application, Dacast does not allow you to choose where your video data is stored and how it's handled – no cloud deployments or on-premises deployments.
    large organizations will have a hard time working with Dacast. It might get the job done, but it will be basic in a lot of aspects.

    Top Features

    • Advanced analytics are provided to keep track of your videos' engagement trends.

    • Embedding live streams is possible, using Dacast URLs and their exact paths with parameters.

    • No authenticated embedding is possible.

    • For content monetization, you can integrate with a paywall.

    • There are multiple features offered as well to include advertisements in your live stream.

    • Low latency live streaming.

    • Event scheduling is not possible with the system. 

    • No live interactivity elements (like live chat and Q&A) – viewers can't engage.

    • It does not provide a live chat feature with its platform,  

    • it does integrate with 3rd party live chat providers. This might be a bit of a problem since this might require organizations to deal with an extra party.  

    • If live streams fail, Dacast too cannot automatically shift to a backup of the live stream, resulting in disruptions.

    Learn more about Dacast and alternatives here.

  6. Brightcove

    Brightcove offers a live streaming platform used mainly by media, broadcasting, arts, and entertainment organizations. It is an external audience-focused simple video platform, only available as a SaaS application.

    Brightcove live streaming platforms

    Hence, Brightcove, too, doesn't give you the option to choose where your data is stored and how it's handled. It also lacks many features for private internal live and on-demand video streaming.

    Top Features

    • High-resolution live stream automatically transcoded.

    • Clip and share live content for promotion on other platforms like social channels.

    • Scalable live streams for large events.

    • This system's video platform services are very steep in terms of price too.  

    • Only SaaS deployment is available.

    • Private live streaming is barely possible with very minimal options

    • The only way you can restrict access is by controlling the registration of users on the platform. 

    • Garner marketing-focused engagement by adding links and clickable CTAs (made possible as Brightcove recently acquired Hapyak).

    • Content Monetization such as paywalls before access is granted to the live stream. 

    Learn more about Brightcove and its alternatives.

  7. Panopto

    As an education-focused platform, Panopto touts itself to cater best to e-learning use cases with mainly internal live streaming functionality.

    Panopto Live Streaming

    Marketing their platform as a secure option, many educational institutions and schools use Panopto for online learning. 

    Top Features

    • Engage students through interactive live elements like live chats and quizzes.

    • You can assign users with specific video permissions for different content.  

    • You can record live streams to make them available as on-demand videos after the live ends.

    • Very basic live stream branding options like logo placement – the platform is not white-label and will not allow you to create custom player templates.

    • Engage students through interactive live elements like live chats and quizzes.

    • You can assign users with specific video permissions for different content.  

    • You can record live streams to make them available as on-demand videos after the live ends.

    • Very basic live stream branding options like logo placement – the platform is not white-label and will not allow you to create custom player templates.

    • Their platform primarily focuses on supplying solutions for educational institutions, and it is more tailored towards institutions of that type.

    • Few content monetization features – current monetization offered through InPlayer integration.

    • Video and its embeds are not SEO-optimized for better search

  8. StreamYard

    StreamYard is mainly opted for public live streaming to a large audience.

    StreamYard Live Streaming

    You can multi-stream to 8 channels, including social media platforms like YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, Twitch or custom RTMP destination. With an almost 5-star rating on G2 with 240+ reviews, this one deserves a review.  

    StreamYard is great for someone who isn't well acquainted with encoders and the complexities of a professional broadcast.

    This one is for all the content creators and businesses wanting to conduct simple public webinars on their social channels but don't want to leave out an audience from certain platforms.

    It offers a simple interface to initiate a professional broadcast, add videos from multiple sources, stream a pre-recorded video, etc. All of this can be done from your browser.

    Disclaimer: For broadcast-grade live events or internal private streams, this option will not be suitable. It is also mainly a live streaming service, not designed for on-demand video streaming.

    Top Features

    • It's free, and you can get started on carrying out a live stream today.

    • You can simultaneously stream to 8 channels like YouTube, Twitch, LinkedIn, Twitter or a Custom RTMP source.

    • No eCDN technology is available to solve enterprise bandwidth challenges.

    • Cannot privately live stream.

    • On-demand video streaming is not supported – so it is not an end-to-end video streaming and management platform.

    • If you want, your live recording can be made available on the social channels you are streaming on.

    • You can create a private chat for hosts to interact with each other and ensure everything goes fine.

    • You can also view comments in one place from the different channels.

    • Feature the top comments that you like or want to answer.

    • There's a limit of up to 10 participants in a single broadcast.

    • You can't live stream a video from Zoom, MS Teams, Cisco Webex, etc.

    • No backup live stream option.

    • Secure live streaming options are limited

  9. IBM Cloud Video

    Founded in 1911, IBM is a well-known name. They have been innovating for quite a while and are also proficient in the live video streaming industry.

    IBM Live Streaming

    It comes as no surprise; IBM Cloud Video have managed to make an efficient live streaming video platform as well.

    Top Features

    • With its AI (Artificial Intelligence) driven platform, you can reach audiences via embeds, open URLs or password-protected channels.  

    • This platform also offers live chat, which is important for viewers to actively interact with the hosts of live streams. This allows them to ask questions, give answers, give suggestions, etc.  

    • Polling is available.

    • SSO integration is not available, leaving the system vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks.  

    • Dividing content into separate user groups is not possible. So, segregating content among a considerable number of users is not achievable.  

    Learn more about IBM Cloud Video and its alternative.

     

    If you are looking to conduct a small-scale private webinar, the above options might not deem fit. Here are our recommendations for the 2 best webinar solutions.

The Best Options for Conducting Webinars

  1. Zoom

    Zoom offers a webinar solution to allow you to host up to around 1,000 meeting panelists and max 10,000 viewers.

    Live Streaming in Zoom

    The panelists can talk amongst themselves while the viewers will be on the watch-only mode for the entire meeting. The advantage of using Zoom is that it is super easy to conduct a webinar, and most people are aware of how to use it. They are also working on improving their security.

    There's no need to set up an encoder, and you can easily get started. You can record webinars and make them available as on-demand videos. However, Zoom is a meeting solution not designed to manage on-demand videos.

    Read More | Managing Recorded On-Demand Webinars in Zoom

    When looking at TrustRadius, we found that a few users were complaining about video playback issues when their internet speed was low or on certain devices. This happens as Zoom doesn't offer transcoding that most live streaming platforms do.

  2. GoToWebinar

    GoToWebibar is an alternative to Zoom for conducting a live stream, where you can stream with up to 1,000 participants and 3,000 viewers.

    GoToWebinar

    It offers live polling and QnA for interactivity. You can also schedule pre-recorded live events or webinars for up to 20,000 attendees.

    Similar to Zoom, it does not offer transcoding, HLS delivery and eCDN support, which is required to optimize delivery for various bandwidths and devices.

 

VIDIZMO - A Complete Solution

Looking for a platform that offers more than just live streaming? Need video content management, video sharing, recorded meetings management, and on-demand streaming as well?

VIDIZMO EnterpriseTube is a complete video content management system for both live and on-demand streaming that eliminates the need to use separate platforms for separate video use cases.

Enterprise Video Platform Infographic

Learn More About VIDIZMO

Contact Us

Live streaming platforms are just one type of video platform. To understand more, visit our detailed guide on video platforms.

Posted by Sabika Tasneem and Shahan Zafar

This article is written jointly by Shahan Zafar (Product Marketing Manager) and Sabika Tasneem (Associate Product Marketing Manager)

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