Batesville Herald Tribune, Batesville, Indiana

Community News Network

June 21, 2013

Can TV ever stop YouTube?

(Continued)

PALO ALTO, Calif. —

This being Google, the solutions to the speed and discovery problems involve lots of engineering tricks. Last year, YouTube began radically overhauling the way it streams videos to users. In the past, when you requested a video from the site, it would send you a single stream containing the whole video. Once the content left YouTube's servers, the company no longer had any control over it; if there was some hiccup along the way, it couldn't serve you a lower-quality video or reroute your request to a different server in another part of the world. So you'd watch the annoying spinner while your video "rebuffered."

Today, across YouTube, rebuffering occurs far too often. Any given video will stop and start around 3 to 5 percent of the time. This differs vastly by country — videos in Japan rebuffer less often than video in India, where the Internet is slower — but the company's goal is to improve these rates everywhere. "Imagine if you got a new television provider and your videos stopped 5 percent of the time, or imagine if it took you five seconds to change channels," says Shishir Mehrotra, a vice president of product at YouTube. "You would get a new television provider, and you wouldn't change channels very much." Mehrorta's goal is to reduce YouTube's rebuffering rate to around 0.1 percent, and he wants videos to start playing within 200 milliseconds of your choosing them, or what he calls "instant time."

The discovery problem is thornier than the speed issue. YouTube's partner program has led to lots of new content on the site. Thousands of channel owners, many of whom have garnered millions of subscribers, now earn money from their YouTube videos. Some of these are quite popular: The comedy duo Smosh have 10 million subscribers, the gaming channel Machinima has 8 million, and a fashion and beauty channel run by Bethany Mota has 2 million. But aside from a few breakout successes, most YouTube channels aren't of mainstream interest; by design, they appeal to niche audiences. To make itself comparable to traditional TV, YouTube needs to fashion these small videos into a larger, more comprehensible viewer experience for viewers. It needs to know what you like, and to serve you a new video that you'll love each time the previous one ends.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • The Simpsons still going strong

    The groundbreaking animation first hit the air Dec. 17, 1989, but the family first appeared on television in "The Tracey Ullman Show" short "Good Night" on April 19, 1987.

    August 21, 2014

  • Police chief resigns over racial slur repost to Facebook

    A repost on his personal Facebook page of a racially-charged comment by the original poster of a comedy video has forced the police chief of an Oklahoma city to resign his office.

    August 21, 2014

  • Does Twitter need a censor?

    Twitter decided last year to make images more prominent on its site. Now, the social network is finding itself caught between being an open forum and patrolling for inappropriate content.

    August 21, 2014

  • sleepchart.jpg America’s sleep-deprived cities

    Americans might run on sleep, but those living in the country's largest cities don't appear to run on much.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Who should pay for your kids ACT?

    Thirteen states paid for 11th-grade students in all public high schools to take the ACT college admission test this year, with several more planning to join them in 2015.

    August 20, 2014

  • Pets.jpg Why do people look like their pets?

    As much as we might quibble over the virtues and vices of Canis domesticus, however, and over whether human nature is any better or worse than dog nature, even dog fanciers don't usually want to look like a dog.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ice bucket challenge trending up

    Internet trends are a dime a dozen these days. Everything from Tebowing to planking to the cinnamon challenge can cause a wave of social media activity that can last for weeks before fizzling out.

    August 19, 2014

  • Africa goes medieval in its fight against Ebola

    As the Ebola epidemic claims new victims at an ever-increasing rate, African governments in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia have instituted a "cordon sanitaire," deploying troops to forcibly isolate the inhabitants in an area containing most of the cases.

    August 18, 2014

  • Democrat? Republican? There's an app for that

    If you're a Republican, you might want to think twice before buying Lipton Iced Tea, and forget about Starbucks coffee. If you're a Democrat, put down that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and throw away the cylinder of Quaker Oats in your pantry.

    August 18, 2014

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Furry Roommates: Dorms Allowing Cats and Dogs Chase Rice Defends Bro-Country 'Jersey Shore Massacre' Pokes Fun at MTV Series Raw: Wash. Mudslides Close Roads, Trap Motorists DC's Godfather of Go-Go Honored Ukraine Calls Russian Convoy a 'direct Invasion' Girl Meets Her 'one in the World' Match Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks Japan Landslide Rescuers Struggle in Heavy Rain Raw: Severe Floods, Fire Wrecks Indiana Homes Endangered Red Wolves Face Uncertain Future Raw: Russian Aid Convoy Arrives in Ukraine Okla. Policeman Accused of Sex Assaults on Duty Dominican Republic Bans Miley Cyrus Concert Raw: Israeli Air Strike in Gaza Raw: Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in Malaysia Attorney: Utah Eatery Had Other Chemical Burn
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Facebook