Video communication is becoming an increasingly integral part of modern business, including healthcare. From orientation videos to streaming video content to videoconferencing and remote collaborative projects, video is changing the way we interact with each other and with our technology. However, the vast, practically limitless potential of video communication comes with a tradeoff: an equally vast demand on your network.
It’s estimated that video content currently accounts for over 90% of internet traffic. An hour’s worth of HD video takes up multiple gigabytes of memory. Just posting a brief video to YouTube requires a fair amount of bandwidth. Live streaming and recording an HD videoconference, which can often last over an hour, is a whole other ballgame than regular, non-video internet browsing.
Therefore, if you’re going to implement video into your company’s policies effectively, you need to make sure that your network is equipped to handle it. You need to ensure that you have the capacity to handle large chunks of high definition video at one time, uninterrupted. And you need to make sure you have the capacity to deliver high definition video to your audience, whether on a desktop computer, smartphone tablet, or any other kind of device, anywhere on the planet.
Budgeting Bandwidth for Video Communication
So, how much bandwidth does your network need in able to handle and accommodate video communication? That depends on your company and your usage. Sit down and plan out exactly how much video will be used in an average day, week, or month, and what you plan on using it for. Will you be uploading content to YouTube? Streaming live feeds of lectures and conferences to your employees? Making video calls? Performing 24 hour video surveillance? And how much of that will be done in HD, vs. standard definition?
There are worksheets and other tools online that can help calculate the demands of video communication on your network based on a variety of factors. Do the math and get an estimate of approximately how much memory you’ll be using on video in an average month, based on your current equipment’s capabilities and your estimated usage. Then, make sure that your network servers are prepared to handle a load that’s considerably higher than that. First of all, it’s important to err on the side of caution. Second of all, you need to prepare for growth.
The popularity, versatility, and overall prevalence of video communication are only going to increase over time. It’s best to equip yourself for that increased usage now, rather than being caught with your pants down a few months to a year from now, and facing slow connections, long load times, and choppy, poor quality video.
Determining the demands of video communication on your network will help you optimize that network and maintain the best possible video experience for your employees and your customers. As video communication becomes increasingly prevalent in today’s business world, poor quality video and slow load times will no longer be tolerated. Unless your network is able to keep up with your video usage, you’ll be left behind. But if you can meet the demands of video communication on your network, then from video content to videoconferencing, there’s no limit to what your organization can accomplish.
About Jim Scalise
Jim is the Avidex Systems Integrated Group Manager and has been in the AV industry for more than 20 years. Jim oversees and manages the integrated systems team and is directly involved in design, application, project and field engineering as well as sales, service and installation support. Contact Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org