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Bitmovin Video Player v8 introduces a modular architecture boosting flexibility and start-up speed

Written by:
August 30th, 2018

Player modules in the Bitmovin player v8

Bitmovin Video Player v8 marks the transition to a module-based approach, allowing developers to load only the features they need.

The New Modular Player?

Version 8.0 includes a range of improvements, but one of the most significant is a shift to a modular architecture. While previous versions relied on a fixed structure, which shipped all functionalities in a single package, the scope of features has now been moved to a module-based structure. This way, individual features (e. g. subtitles, DRM, or ad-integration) can be added or removed for each specific build of the player. The modules to be used can either be defined during the building process or dynamically, based on the displayed asset or the displaying device.

Features that are not relevant in a specific use case, are omitted from the package thus reducing the overall size and load time.

This shift unlocks the potential to cut the size of the player application to the absolute minimum and makes a significant difference in the startup speed of the player. Our tests show that with an available bandwidth of ~1.5 Mbit/s, the modular player configurations shown in the diagram above will decrease your player’s startup time by around 900ms, when compared to the standard Bitmovin Player v7.

For information on the available modules see our video player overview.

Optimized loading times to resolve page abandonment

Page abandonment due to excessive loading times is a major concern for any website, large or small. Whether it’s e-commerce, digital distribution or communication services –  the time it takes between when a visitor clicks on a link to when they see the content they are looking for is a key factor in measuring conversions across virtually all industries. Page abandonment rates increase rapidly as load time increases, which in turn, negatively impacts conversion rates and revenues.

Page abandonment rates for page load times

If the objective is to optimize loading times, reducing the size of any kind of web-based application should be a priority. Anything that needs to be transmitted on top of the actual content should be kept to an absolute minimum.

Advertising Moved to the API

In line with the changes to our player, we have moved our tried-and-tested advertising features to the player API, giving developers a new level of control. If you are used to running client-side ads on our player, you probably won’t notice much of a difference as we kept the look and feel pretty much the same. For power users, who care about what’s going on under the hood, the shift towards an API-based architecture is exciting news.

While we kept everything in place for ads to run using our best practice implementation, it is now possible for our customers to create customizations running on top of our set of tools. This way, they can add customized ad solutions meeting their exact needs without needing additional infrastructure in place. All that’s required are custom ad modules that connect to our API using the same interfaces. Read our blog post on the changes to our Advertising API to learn more!

Analytics Module Runs Out of the Box

Analytics are key to understanding your audience, optimizing your video delivery workflow and identifying possible bottlenecks. Realizing that early on, analytics have formed an integral part of our products at Bitmovin from the very start. Our Analytics module integrates flawlessly with our player and can be used out-of-the-box with the pre-packaged Analytics Dashboard. Due to our open architecture, it’s also possible to create a dashboard of your own, using customized REST API queries to get the perfect metrics for your specific business cases.

Our Analytics module is easy to integrate, as we design our modules with developers in mind. It’s seamlessly integrated with our software stack and connects to your back-end solutions flawlessly thanks to our open platform philosophy. The concept is as clever as it is simple: We’ll give you an out-of-the-box solution that is a joy to work with, while keeping our module open so you can create your own amazing tools on top of that. Learn more by reading up on our Analytics module.

Besides the most recent improvements, the new player has kept everything that made it great in previous versions. This means it still provides an outstanding level of compatibility and playback quality. It plays on any device or browser, creating an impressively seamless experience for each user – whether they are on a new smartphone or an exotic legacy device.

What’s next for Bitmovin Player?

For the next version of our player, we are going to push the modular approach further. We’re planning to move some modules to open source and provide open interfaces. The goal is to allow our customers to take our player module and customize it independently to their own use cases and workflows. Additionally, we’re looking to increase the level of feature granularity for our modules, so it would basically amount to one feature per module. This will allow the player to be customized even further and it will eventually turn into a tool kit, which can be used by our clients to assemble custom modules. We’re also looking to move our analytics platform to a module of its own, which will make it easier for clients to manage the analytics component.

Can’t wait to see our player in action? Check out our video player demos!

Bitmovin Player v8 could do for your workflows right now, get in touch with one of our experts!

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