latakoo Flight Uses Machine Learning to Estimate Upload Time

latakoo’s Flight application offers estimated time to send video. 
Download the latest version, 6.3.15.

latakoo’s newest Flight application has a beta enhancement that many of our users need — a built-in tool that estimates the time it will take to upload a file to the latakoo cloud. This estimate is based on the uploader’s connection speed, hardware, file type and size. It is a big improvement for latakoo customers who send video on deadline. Once trained, the application will provide an upload time estimate at every quality setting, and will also predict the compression setting that provides the quickest trip to the latakoo cloud.

Always Make Slot

The time estimator represents the official entrance of machine learning to the latakoo Flight application. The app learns the behavior of your specific computer and combines that information with an Internet throughput test to predict how long it will take to upload a video. This new technology gives you an idea where latakoo is headed. The latakoo science, design and engineering teams are building a system that not only has the right tool for whatever delivery challenge is faced, the app increasingly helps pick the best tool for the job.

Estimating Upload Time with Flight App

— Calculate Internet Speeds

Launch the latakoo Flight app, and it automatically tests the Internet connection and quickly provides the results through two new speed gauges located in the app’s lower right hand corner. There are two speed gauges, because the app is testing two different transfer protocols to see which one is faster. The transfer protocols are UDP (User Datagram Protocol) and TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). Both are available in the new latakoo app.

latakoo App 6.3.9

The speed gauges show the average UDP and TCP upstream throughput to the latakoo server that is most likely to be used for your video upload. This produces a different, and more useful, bandwidth speed than users would get with a speedtest.net or testmy.net check, which goes to someone else’s infrastructure and reports a maximum possible speed instead of an average speed.

— Auto-Selection of Best Transfer Protocol

Drag a video file into the app, and it will automatically select the fastest transfer protocol based on the speed test — UDP or TCP. This means that despite our transparency with the speed gauges, you won’t have to make the decision. The app is going to automatically pick the best tool for the job. You can always change this manually if you disagree.

— Time Estimates for Every Quality

The app will use the Internet speed, and it’s understanding of how fast your computer can encode video to provide an estimate of the time it will take to upload the file at every quality setting. It will also recommend the quality setting, compressed or uncompressed, that will get the video to the cloud in the least amount of time. You’ll see the latakoo logo placed below that compression setting on the quality slider.

Our goal is for you to send the highest quality file possible in the time available before deadline. The quickest delivery may not be the quality setting that produces the highest video quality. One of the advantages of the latest app is that it informs uploaders how long it takes to send video at every compression setting. The further you move the quality slider to the right, the less compression is applied to the file, which typically produces better visual quality.

Because this is a beta feature, we cannot promise that the predicted delivery times will be exact for each and every upload. This feature will become more precise the more it is used by all of our customers.

— Training the app

In order for the application to accurately predict delivery times, the app will train itself by monitoring your first 20 uploads after installation of 6.3.9. During this initial period, your app will not be able to estimate upload times. Instead, you will receive a “Not Enough Data” message because not enough files have been uploaded yet for a valid recommendation. The app will inform you how many files remain to be uploaded before you will receive an estimate.

A note about training the app: Training the application depends on both the user login and the machine. For instance, if you have one computer in a mobile news unit with 2–3 users, each user will have to log in and train the app to see the estimator recommendations. Conversely, if you use multiple machines to upload files, each machine will have to be trained under your log-in to see the estimator recommendations. Once you’ve trained the app, it will retain those settings, even when the app is updated.

UDP Improvements

This version of the app makes it easier to switch between UDP and TCP uploading. There is now an on-off toggle switch on the outside of the app (upper right corner) that makes turning on UDP very simple. For the most part, you won’t have to worry about when to use UDP, because the latakoo app will make the decision based on the speed test.

New UDP Toggle Switch

UDP is a great tool for increasing delivery speed in high latency conditions. High latency occurs in high bandwidth environments or when there is a large distance between the uploader’s location and our servers, such as an upload from China. However, many latakoo uploads occur in low latency environments, where TCP is the better choice for speed and stability. Latency is not typically the significant issue in low bandwidth environments where news crews and production companies often record their video.

Straight to Air with the Item Code

Customers who use latakoo HUB for download automation into an on-premise asset manager can now turn on latakoo’s item code workflow. When the item code is entered during a video upload, the video can be checked into a waiting placeholder in the asset manager. This feature allows the video to automatically populate a show rundown and be immediately available to play out over the air. That means latakoo’s video workflow now supports moving content from the field to air with one click of the button.

Lost Connection Improvements

The Flight application has improved handling of lost or stopped connection. If the Internet connection is lost during an upload, the app will resume sending the file as soon as the connection is re-established. There are also clear alerts that let you know when the Internet connection has been lost or is not available. Videos continue to encode even when the Internet connection is lost to speed transfers once the connection is regained.

Photo Compression

Finally, with this updated app, you can now upload compressed photo files. The quality slider works for photos and groups of photos in exactly the same way it works for video by allowing you to quickly send a smaller file.

Gratitude

Most of our customers live, breathe and die on deadline. As former broadcast journalists, we intimately understand the importance of getting the video back to the broadcast center on time and in the highest quality possible. That’s why we are constantly innovating to make your job easier. We want you to concentrate on producing the best video stories possible, and leave it to us to get the video to the production facility on time.

Thank you for using latakoo. We’ve built this system for you.

latakoo is constantly evolving the features in our Flight uploading application. If you have any questions or feedback, don’t hesitate to reach out to support@latakoo.com. Let us know how we can continue to make it easier to do your job.

Want to learn more about using latakoo? Join our monthly How to latakoo webinars by registering here. We’ll be talking about the new app in our next webinar.

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