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Amazon Launch Elastic Transcoder

by Nick Brookes on January 29, 2013

Amazon Web Services have announced the release of Elastic Transcoder (currently in beta right now).  The Cloud based service provides on-demand conversion of  video formats:

Amazon Elastic Transcoder manages all aspects of the transcoding process for you transparently and automatically. There’s no need to administer software, scale hardware, tune performance, or otherwise manage transcoding infrastructure. You simply create a transcoding “job” specifying the location of your source video and how you want it transcoded. Amazon Elastic Transcoder also provides transcoding presets for popular output formats, which means that you don’t need to guess about which settings work best on particular devices. All these features are available via service APIs and the AWS Management Console.” [Read More]

This certainly has the appearance of a potential game-changer for the DAM market (and several others possibly too).  Many DAM developers use third party transcoding tools and either they (or their clients) need to invest in more powerful servers to cope with the task.  Even using open source tools like FFMPEG doesn’t avoid this.  Cloud based encoding is not a new idea, encoding.com have been offering this for a while – and they might not be very pleased to see Amazon arrive as a potential competitive threat either (although they will probably argue their service is more sophisticated and offers specialist features).

Amazon have the wider Cloud delivery infrastructure and as we have reported before, they are muscling in on many of the core DAM services that allow a prospective DAM developer to begin to assemble a series of fairly powerful applications using their services alone.

As the more ‘hands-on’ guy here at DAM News, I tend to take some of the comment the others post with more than grain or two of salt, especially with reference to how soon some of their predictions might become reality.  So it was with their DAM Value Chain idea that has been a theme with many recent posts.  With this latest service from Amazon, I am beginning to see a little better how that might take shape from a practical perspective.  It’s usually easier for software developers to start from scratch without the hassle of a pile of legacy junk to maintain and I can see how using these services instead might be of definite appeal from that angle alone.

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