After some customers have had frequent / recurring issues streaming between LiveWebDJ and their stream host, it has been brought to my attention that LiveWebDJ customers may be interested in having their stream hosting provided by LiveWebDJ directly, which would eliminate any issues on the Internet between LiveWebDJ and their stream host.
As many of you may know, we are owned by iCastCenter.com which provides stream hosting services. That said, we frequently get asked if we would provide stream hosting directly and integrate it within LiveWebDJ.
My question to the LiveWebDJ community is: Would your station benefit from having LiveWebDJ host your Shoutcast/Icecast streams? And if so, what kinds of features do you need from such a scenario? How many listener slots and what price points do you feel LiveWebDJ would need to hit?
Please keep in mind that while we are well aware of stream hosts offering "unlimited" listener slots, in reality, it just doesn't exist. In fact, that is 9 out of 10 times the root reason why stations run into issues is due to stream hosts not always delivering on their promises. Sometimes it's not the stream host direct fault either - often it can simply be the data center that provides their servers who are at fault. The simple truth is nobody can offer "unlimited" listener slots. While I did want to point this out, at the same time I'm wanting to avoid a hopeless debate on this issue. Every listener consumes bandwidth and there is only so much bandwidth on each server, generally 1gbps (1,000mbps) and bandwidth isn't free, unfortunately - so please be careful not to tell us you want "unlimited" listener slots, and rather, specify a reasonable amount that would support your needs.
We've always maintained to keep LiveWebDJ stream host neutral. That said, there may be a need to improve upon the quality of service that LiveWebDJ provides to those that need quality stream hosting. Unless we are providing the stream hosting, we really can't assure any quality of connection between LiveWebDJ and your Shoutcast or Icecast server. Don't worry we will always allow our customers to broadcast to any stream host they wish, but want to get a feel from the community on whether adding a stream hosting bundle feature would benefit you.
Yay or nay? I look forward to your feedback!
What you are proposing is interesting. I will admit that I am one who has dealt with the "budget" host provider deal. I have since changed service providers and did a bit of research into what data centers they use. The reviews, while not perfect (most reviews are from people who had a bad experience) people had very good things to say about them in general. So I switched and so far so good.
One thing I am learning is that when there are many pieces to the puzzle it becomes more frustrating determine the cause and then fix the issue. Because of that it might be worth removing one of the pieces so if there is an issue there is one less place to go for help.
Of course this also puts everything into one bag. One of the nice things I am realizing is to have my host separate with AutoDJ as a fallback. When I screw up LiveWebDJ (yep I do it a lot) I can at least fall back to AutoDJ to keep my stream up. This is important to me to keep my iTunes Directory listing as half my listeners come from iTunes.
It will be a decision that I would have to consider and will if it is offered. I don't have huge needs but I do need two streams. I keep separate mp3 and ACC streams. I like to keep the ACC stream geared specifically for mobile users. It also helps spread the load of listeners so I don't need to have a large number of slots. Both my streams are set up for 100 slots and I am using about 20-40% of them at any one time with peaks to 60%.
If you were to bundle hosting with LiveWebDJ I would like to have the option for multiple streams/servers to keep things as I have. Even if the second stream is just a 5 slot stream that I can relay to another. Mainly for the encoding service to ACC.
As for price point, I can't say because I don't know your business structure. I run my station as a hobby and as such I am not going to spend hundreds per month for hosting/automation/encoding/etc. but I am willing to consider pretty much anything if the value offered is worth the price.
I would definitely consider it. I love the fact that I can get one on one help here at a reasonable price. That is hugely important to a newbie like me. The customer service I have been experiencing with my previous two companies has me actively looking for alternatives. I was considering switching to iCast Center now. What kind of rough timeframe would we be looking at if you guys do this?
Not sure of any time frame. TBH unless more people reply to this with a yay we probably won't do it.
Keep in mind that our sister company http://icastcenter.com provides stream hosting and LiveWebDJ's infrastructure is on their premium network. Having said that, it's still separate and requires you to enter the settings into the "Output Encoders. i.e. it's not built-in.