Windows Azure Media Services REST API

Ajay Ohri, February 14th, 2013

Microsoft has announced the availability of Windows Azure Media Services. The general availability was announced by Scott Guthrie on his blog.

With Windows Azure Media Services, you can stream video to HTML5, Flash, Silverlight, Windows 8, iPad, iPhone, Android, Xbox, Windows Phone and other clients using a wide variety of streaming formats:

Windows Azure Media Services provides you with a Media Platform as a Service (PaaS) that enables users to easily scale your business as it grows, and pay only for what they use. As a developer, you can control Windows Azure Media Services by using REST APIs or .NET and Java SDKs to build a media workflow that can automatically upload, encode and deliver video. Microsoft also made repositories of  some of Windows Azure SDKs available at Github. I wish other companies did the same with their professed love for openness!

Developers can read this for programming with the Media Services REST API. To start programming with REST, you need to first enable your Windows Azure account for Media Services.

Windows Azure Media Services supports multiple different options to upload assets into Media Services:

  • Using REST APIs, or .NET or Java SDKs you can upload files to the server over HTTP/S with AES 256 encryption.
  • Bulk uploadan entire media library with thousands of large files.  For bulk upload, you can use the Bulk Ingest .NET Library or a partner upload solution such as Aspera which uses UDP for transporting files at very rapid speeds.

I also like the design of the REST console . An easy to use REST console can really help craft requests especially for new comers to the platform.

The Windows Azure Media Services REST API reference describes the entities and functions that are used when creating, processing, managing, and delivering Assets. Some examples of an Asset are: a full movie, TV show, specific edit; a clip from a movie, TV show, animation, camera ISO file, event, etc.; a movie trailer or promotional video; an advertisement; an audio file, radio show, podcast, sound file, etc. However, you must not store a movie, its trailer, an advertisement, and an international edit version of the same movie in a single Asset.

This is an interesting play by Microsoft Azure and shows it’s determination to remain relevant in the post-PC era.

Microsoft Azure has identified  these five case scenarios for using it’s services-

1) Websites
2) Virtual- Machines
3) Mobile Services
4) Cloud Services
5) Big Data
6) Media

Windows Azure Media Services REST API is part of 90 day free trial by Azure.

Media Services? Just another API call away!

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