The broadband video space is getting a lot of coverage these days. Beyond the hype of 2008, we can see the industry getting serious about building real online video businesses in 2009. I’d like to address a couple myths that seem to permeate the industry, and report on some interesting stats about Vuze.
Myth #1 — Consumers won’t download a video application.
According to our internal data (and Google and Quantcast), we’ve just passed the milestone of 10 million monthly uniques to our content portal, the Vuze HD Network. We’ve been thrilled at the way our community has embraced the new design of Vuze 4.0, and think this disproves the conventional wisdom that people are only willing to stream videos from their web browser. People do download applications that have compelling value propositions. It’s the case for iTunes and Skype, and it’s the case for Vuze, which enables our users to Find, Download, and Play great videos – in HD – anytime, anywhere.
Myth #2 — Online video viewers are not engaged.
Well, this might not be a myth for some services, but we were surprised when we read research from TubeMogul, entitled How Much of a Typical Online Video Is Actually Watched? This piqued our curiosity, so we did some number crunching and found that Vuze HD Network viewers are far less likely to drop off at any point during the video than the average web viewer watching a short-form web video. This culminates in Vuze viewers being a full four times more likely to watch a five-minute video all the way to the end than the viewer of an average web video.
We suspect that more people watch videos to completion on the Vuze HD Network because they find content that is relevant to them, and because they love the superior picture and sound quality. Which would you rather watch – grainy pixilated web video streams, or stunning full screen HD videos?
Some Interesting Stats About Vuze:
Here at Vuze, we haven’t been concentrating on industry buzz or PR. We’ve been quietly focusing all our resources on building features for our growing community of users. The results speak for themselves:
- Since our Vuze 4.0 launch in mid-October, 1 million unique users have signed up for the new Subscriptions feature, and more than 8 million total subscriptions have been created.
- Total Friend Connections among our users (to share content and get faster downloads) have increased more than 350% since mid-October.
- Search traffic on Vuze has increased more than 700% since June 2008, with our users currently conducting more than 1 million search queries per day.
- In the past 3 months, we’ve gotten more than 45,000 emails from our users with comments, constructive suggestions, and support for the direction we’re headed. In the words of one user (Josh K) who recently reached out to us:
I had this client since its humble beginnings – and I feel compelled to say that I believe Vuze is to other torrent clients as iTunes is to other music players. In my mind, that’s an accomplishment. Keep on in the direction you’re going – it’s awesome!
Thanks, Josh – and thanks to everyone who is using Vuze. We have a bunch of things in the hopper that we think will give the product a whole new dimension. With our efficient cost structure and amazing technology, we’ll continue to innovate and scale into 2009 and beyond.
Last week, Ernesto from Torrent Freak asked us a question, “What are your top tips for optimizing download speed?” so our co-founder and CTO, Olivier Chalouhi set to responding. Seems to me that as many people as possible should profit from his wise words, so here they are:
1. Seed. Downloading speeds will be sub-optimal for everyone unless everyone plays their part and seeds. Private tracker sites are a great example of how the overall speed of the swarm increases when everyone is seeding and downloading in equal measure. So, play your part in seeding and tell others to as well.
2. Be connectable. Make sure you’re not fire-walled by opening up your incoming ports or by enabling UPnP in your router otherwise you’ll be leaving bandwidth on the table.
3. Manage your upload speed. It is all about striking a balance. You donâ€™t want the upload speed to be too high, nor do you want it to be too low. Ideally you want to set your upload speed to be 80% of the maximum possible line speed.
4. Select the right torrents. Your download will be faster if you choose to download a torrent where there is a good balance of seeds and peers. For instance, Vuze ranks its search results according to the number of seeds and peers to make this easier.
5. Be realistic. Check the swarm average and if you’re already above average, then you just need to be patient. If you’re below average, go back and check some of these other things I’ve mentioned.
6. Get a Friend Boost. I wouldn’t be a Vuze developer if I didn’t give a plug for the Friend Boost feature we recently developed. When you create a network of Friends on Vuze, you agree to seed content to each other on a preferential basis. That is, if one of your friends has a torrent that you want, you will be able to directly use a portion of their bandwidth to get it. In most cases this will increase your download speed.
Obviously ways in which to actually implement some of these tips will differ from client to client. If you want to find out how to do it on Vuze, you can check out our wiki.
FCC Chairman, Kevin Martin’s conclusion last week that Comcast had been improperly blocking bittorrent traffic was, for us, a major milestone in what has been an exciting journey that began in November of last year.
We had known for some time that ISPs were throttling bittorrent traffic, and we realized that our vantage point on the industry put us in a unique position to stand up for what’s right. So we decided we had to take action. We filed a petition with the FCC asking them to put in place clear rules on the issue of ISP network management practices.
Since then we have testified at an FCC hearing at Harvard, attended a second hearing at Stanford, joined with our community to monitor traffic throttling practices, and published our findings. All along the way, we have been overwhelmed by the support we have received from our community of users, from their comments in forums to their participation in collecting data with our plug-in.
So, we were thrilled to learn of Chairman Martin’s conclusion and to hear that he agreed with our cry of “foul!”. We were particularly pleased that Chairman Martin asked Comcast to be transparent with consumers about their past practices and future plans for network management. From the outset we have said that, to be fully effective, rules must be accompanied by a requirement for transparency into what ISPs are actually doing.
The Chairman’s statements do not yet represent the view of the full Commission. However, we hope the other four Commissioners have the courage to follow Chairman Martin’s lead and adopt a decisive order condemning the use of the “man in the middle” technique and other similar network management tactics. And while we await the Commission’s decision, we will continue to push for the rules we believe are required to create an open and free Internet that will benefit consumers everywhere.
Jay and the Vuze Team
- 5001 B07 May 22, 2013Added ‘move to folder on complete’ option to manual tags: […]
- 5001 B06 May 21, 2013Added upload-priority option for Tags Added auto-xcode for Tags Added auto-tagging for subscriptions […]
- 5001 B05 May 17, 2013Increased maximum BT message size to handle torrents with huge numbers of pieces Added start/stop/pause/resume controls to tags Switched to check-boxes in Tags Overview […]