In July 2016, Microsoft launched Stream, its business video service that aims to give businesses that want to share video internally the same kind of tools and flexibility that YouTube offers to consumers — but with the added benefits of the security tools enterprises expect from their document management services. Remember Microsoft already offered a business video service in the form of Office 365 Video and Stream is now expected to replace O365 Video sometime in 2017.We get lot of queries about the capabilities of Stream and its comparison with kPoint. So here are 7 key points on how Stream compares with kPoint.
Video Authoring and Ingestion
Many organizations still struggle with generating crowd-sourced, relevant video content. Stream supports content ingestion only by means of video file upload. It has a separate product called Office Mix to record videos but currently there is no direct integration to publish Office Mix videos to Stream. kPoint provides multiple ways of video authoring such as a simple recorder to capture video, screen and audio, a live event broadcaster which also makes the recording available for later use, linking YouTube content into your organization’s video library, or simply uploading content using video files.
Interactivity in Videos
Trainers and subject matter experts often want to improve learners’ engagement with their content by the use of interactivity. kPoint supports multiple interactive widgets such as quizzes, highlights, spotlights with internal / external navigation links, polls and feedback surveys. Currently, Stream does not offer such interactive widgets on top of a video.
Bandwidth Optimization for Enterprises
While Stream is just a cog in the wheel for Microsoft, a comprehensive video platform is kPoint’s dedicated offering. Which is why we ensure that all video related challenges of an enterprise are fulfilled with our flagship product. We understand that enterprises with a large number of employees at a particular location consume a large amount of bandwidth, and hence require a bandwidth-efficient solution for streaming their video content. kPoint offers a Point of Presence (PoP) server which works as a cache server located within the enterprise LAN. kPoint PoP reduces bandwidth consumption of enterprises by eliminating re-delivery of video content from the Internet. Stream does not have an on-location caching server for enterprise bandwidth optimization, although it may be possible to achieve similar functionality by purchasing other Microsoft products such as a separate streaming server.
Branding and White Labelling of Video Portal
Trainers and subject matter experts often want to improve learners’ engagement. Enterprises often need to brand and white label their video libraries in accordance with their corporate guidelines. Stream, does not offer this capability today, and neither is it listed in its roadmap. kPoint offers complete white labelling of the url, as well as branding of your portal with its logo and colour scheme.
While Microsoft thinks of Stream as the product for an enterprise’ internal employees, kPoint caters to 360 degrees video needs of businesses. Businesses often need to share videos with users outside of the enterprise, such as contract workers, partners, customers and public. Although videos are hosted on public clouds and streamed through CDNs, Stream allows video sharing only with co-workers in an enterprise. kPoint’s licensing works based on video usage and allows video sharing with both internal and external users.
User Directory Integration
Single sign-on authentication using your corporate credentials has become a norm for enterprise applications. Stream allows SSO integration only with Azzure AD. kPoint allows SSO integration with multiple SAML AD providers apart from Oauth providers such as Google.
We come across many content managers who meticulously track video usage. User-wise view counts, video engagement maps, user location maps, user-wise percentage view completion rates, channel analytics etc. are the items most carefully tracked. kPoint offers these analytics and more in elegant dashboards as well as in downloadable spreadsheets. Currently, Stream only provides basic video view count level analytics and says it will provide view trends, detailed portal and channel level analytics as part of its roadmap later in 2018.
Although Microsoft is gung-ho about promoting its latest video platform, they already had products like SharePoint for video streaming, Office Mix for video creation, O365 videos as a video platform and Azzure CDN streaming as a video streaming service. Microsoft’s zigzag video strategy does not inspire much confidence in enterprise video users, especially when it has sunset its previous enterprise video management product in a mere 18 months.