Microsoft has released a preview of a new enterprise video solution called Stream via this blog post. Microsoft describes this as "a new business video service that democratizes access to and discovery of video at work." It is available for users now to sign up, log in, and start uploading videos.
- Here is where you can go to sign up for the preview.
This caught me by suprise when this was announced today as I thought Office 365 Video was the center of the enterprise video world at Microsoft. The office team released their own blog post to try to shed some light on this subject titled What Microsoft Stream means to Office 365. The moral of the overlapping story is that Stream will be the future of enterprise video and Stream will integrate into Office 365 in the future and the two services will feel like one thing. They will continue to be separate services until Stream moves out of preview. Mary Jo Foley has some more information about this topic here.
I have worked a lot with Office 365 Video both personally doing public presentations and helping clients get started with Office 365 Video. My first reaction is that this is for the better. Stream will uncouple enterprise video from SharePoint and gives more power to Azure Media Services which powers both services. This shows that the teams are now working together to provide a single solution with less confusion in the future.
A key thing to note for this preview:
Keep using Office 365 video for your enterprise. Microsoft will be planning the transition between services when the time comes.
The structure of Stream feels very similar to Office 365 Video so you can tell the merging won't be to bad. As an example, Stream is built using channels just like Office 365 video.
Here are some of the features I noticed on my first pass.
- The upload experience felt similar as far as metadata editing and look and feel
- Uploading and playback was fast
- Thumbnails are automatically generated and you can upload your own
- You can upload a caption file
- A video can be part of multiple channels as they are more like a tag
- View count history occurs very quickly
- You can add videos to your personal watchlist
- You can follow channels
Here are the current limits for the Stream Preview
- Tenant Limits:
- 10,000 total videos
- 200 total channels
- Channel Limits:
- 12 users/AD security groups assigned per channel
- 200 videos per channel
- Video Limits:
- 12 users/AD security groups assigned per video
- 5 subtitle/captions tracks per video
- 5 thumbnails total per video
- User Limits:
- 100 uploaded videos per user
- 20 channels created per user
Here is what the sign up and first screens look like.
1. Navigate to the Stream page to sign up
2. Enter your email
3. Go get the new link to finish up
4. Click start to agree (feel free to read the terms and conditions!)
5. Invite anyone else you want to come play
6. Start creating channels and uploading videos!