Follow up to Our Recent Transcode ChangesAug 29 2013 · 70 comments · Engineering, New Features, News, Press, Status, Tech
/This blog is a follow up to our previous blog on this subject.
We started this week off by implementing our new transcode labeling and resolution changes. While we checked our systems and made initial tweaks, we also followed your feedback to these changes. Considering the lack of communication we provided and an unnecessarily silly tweet, we could clearly see that many of you were frustrated. It’s been an interesting 48 hours.
These initial configurations were not meant to be final. Our intent was to make changes as we evaluated functionality of the new system and reviewed your feedback. While we erred on the side of providing the best mobile experience (Low = 240p and Medium = 360p), we left our Web users wanting more (ie, 480p).
Here is our plan for making a few adjustments now and more later.
When we launched the new labels and adjusted resolution targets on Monday, here’s what we set:
- Low 240p
- Medium 360p
- High 720p
In addition to these, we relabeled the broadcaster’s natively configured resolution to Source for all channels. We do not alter the broadcaster’s source in any way. As alluded to in the previous blog, we made this labeling change because the resolution of the stream is only a very small component of what makes a channel great. Resolution alone doesn’t account for important information like broadcaster starvation or entertainment value. We want broadcasters to be able to focus on creating great content at the best quality they can offer; picking what you watch shouldn’t be about what number shows up at the bottom of the player.
One huge benefit to the new video system is that all Twitch Partners now offer a full set of resolution options.
As of last night (August 28, 2013), we adjusted labels and their corresponding resolutions to more Web-focused qualities:
- Low 360p
- Medium 480p
- High 720p
We want to emphasize the transitional nature of these changes. We expect that moving all of our transcoding into a unified system will lead to a significantly more efficient use of resources. If things go well, we’re hoping over the several months to improve the quality and bandwidth requirements for all transcoded broadcasts.
We’re also considering ways for the more curious viewers to find more in-depth stream information like frame rate and bitrate.
We strive to provide the best experience across all of our platforms, and will continue to push the envelope with new features. Feedback is essential in making sure we’re doing right by our users. We thank you as always for your feedback and look forward to hearing more from you as we deliver on this plan.
PS: We’ve never had any intention of charging for 480p. Resolutions are paywalled entirely at the broadcaster’s discretion.