Windows Azure Media Services offers cloud-based video delivery

Microsoft has unveiled Windows Azure Media Services, a cloud capability for delivering video to clients and mobile devices.

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Microsoft has unveiled Windows Azure Media Services, a cloud capability for delivering video to clients and mobile devices.

Scott Guthrie, Microsoft corporate vice president in the Microsoft Server and Tools Business, said yesterday that Windows Azure Media Services is a Platform as a Service for building and delivering media solutions to customers. He said: "It offers a bunch of ready-to-use services that enable the fast ingestion, encoding, format-conversion, storage, content protection, and streaming (both live and on-demand) of video. It also integrates and exposes services provided by industry leading partners - enabling an incredibly deep media stack of functionality that you can leverage."

Streaming formats are supported, including Smooth Streaming, HTTP Live Streaming, and Flash Media Streaming. Services can be delivered to HTML5, Silverlight, Flash, and Windows 8 clients as well as to Apple iPad and iPhone, Google Android, and Xbox and Windows Phone devices.

"One of the unique aspects of Windows Azure Media Services is that all of its features are exposed using a consistent HTTP REST API," Guthrie said. "This is true both for the media services we've built, as well as the partner-delivered media services that are enabled through it. This makes it incredibly easy to automate media workflows and integrate the combined set of services within your applications and media solutions."