One of my professors from last year and a bunch of my friends have been developing Zattoo, a peer-to-peer video streaming technology back in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The client runs on both Windows and Mac and supposedly allows millions of viewers to watch a single live video stream over the Internet without costing the broadcaster a whole lot of bandwidth.
It is a little like BitTorrent in the fact that its peer-to-peer and doesn’t require the original person with the content to have a huge pipe to the Internet. It is very different from BitTorrent in the fact that the content is streaming. Timing makes a difference. If a piece of the video gets lost over the network, there is no need to resend it because you can’t rewind the video. There is no way to save the video to your computer either.
Just a few days ago, the news went out about Zattoo being the the system used for streaming the 2006 FIFA World Cup. That is very exciting news. I’m looking forward to being able to watch soccer over the Zattoo client in June! That is… if they are broadcasting to the US…
UPDATE: Looks like Zattoo has a blog now! Yey!