As scholar Clay Shirky said, "It is the inconvenience of human intelligence and the environment that together create our society." His words aptly describe the rapid development of the mobile Internet today. Let’s take network video as an example. Video resource has snowballed, which has led to accumulation of massive users and huge video content libraries. Under such circumstances, the "The Great Navigation era" in the video field is arriving.
Such prosperity gives video content service providers a promising market. However, balancing high costs and better user experience is not an easy task, which deeply plagues them. How to bring perfect enjoyment of video to users under control of cost? In response to this question, Xu Yinfei, Kingsoft Cloud Big Data and AI Technical Director, delivered a keynote speech at the Intel Video Cloud Technology Symposium on March 14. Xu said that as the leader of video cloud services, Kingsoft Cloud assists customers in solving this pain point with its two products: KSC265 and KSHD (Kingsoft Smart High Definition). Not only that, Kingsoft Cloud also guarantees the customer's business with perfect transcoding infrastructure and transcoding technology.
KSC265 meets one-stop efficient service needs
CNNIC recently released the "Statistical Report on the Development of China's Internet Network", showing that as of December 2018, the number of online video users reached 612 million, of which mobile network video users reached 590 million. Xu said, "The growing demand for 'clear and fluent' has put forward higher requirements for video content service providers, which requires more complete cloud service support." Kingsoft Cloud constantly explores and innovates to meet the needs of optimizing costs and better experiences.
Since 2018, High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC), also known as H.265, has seen a significant increase in usage worldwide. Compared with 2017, the proportion of H.265 video traffic in China has tripled. KingSoft HEVC Encoder (KSC265 for short) is the leader in coding, which can better meet the customer's one-stop efficient service needs.
The innovation of KSC265 mobile codec enables Kingsoft Cloud to achieve full link and full terminal coverage. Self-developed KSC265 codec technology has greatly improved the picture quality with the same bit rate and bandwidth, so that 1080P HD video can be transmitted even if the network is lower than 1.5Mbps. Kingsoft Cloud creates a higher level of watching experience while reducing costs. At present, KSC265 has been deployed in multiple application scenarios such as PC live broadcast, mobile live broadcast and short video, which can save bandwidth cost by 30%-50% and output high definition image quality.
KSHD combines HD and bandwidth savings
Xu said in his speech that AI technology has made breakthroughs in the image field in recent years, which brings new opportunities for Kingsoft Cloud. AI technology is applied not only to image and video content perception, but also to scene recognition and region of interest (ROI) segmentation. This is the core of KSHD.
In terms of video scene recognition, KSHD establishes video models for different live scenes and multiple types of content, so that they can be classified and recognized in real time. It can configure the appropriate coding parameters according to the identification of different scenes. The optimal coding template parameters can also be selected according to the richness of the detail texture, the motion speed of the video picture content, and the complexity of the video.
The region of interest segmentation technology provides the possibility for more sophisticated rate control strategies. When a person watches a video, his eyes don't notice all the details, but only pay attention to the parts. Based on the ROI segmentation of deep learning techniques, KSHD can identify the region of interest (foreground). It can reduce bit rate of non-focus areas in video, thus saving bandwidth. At the same time, it allocates more code rate with enhancement for ROI, which can effectively improve subjective feelings.
Xu said that KSHD balances HD and bandwidth savings. By removing noise that is undetectable by the human eye, KSHD specializes in ROI coding, saving at least 20%-40% of bandwidth cost without compromising user experience.
Perfect transcoding technology escorts customer business
Xu said that both KSC265 and KSHD offer flexible cloud and private deployment solutions. Customers can also experience different transcoding value-added services for these two products. In addition to excellent transcoding effects and performance, it is also stable and highly available. “At Kingsoft Cloud, we currently have two large transcoding centers. In the future, we will establish 10 plus edge transcoding clusters in China, supporting concurrent 50,000 channels live transcoding and million-level on-demand transcoding. Users can use KSC265 and KSHD at any time. We hope to guarantee our customer's business with perfect transcoding infrastructure and transcoding technology.”
In terms of video processing, Kingsoft Cloud and Intel will maintain long-term and close cooperation. Based on Intel Xeon platform, Kingsoft Cloud will continue to optimize the video encoding performance of KSC265, in order to reduce the cost of scale deployment. In terms of deep learning, reasoning acceleration, based on Intel MKL and open VINO, makes it possible to deploy on the Intel platform with large-scale for KSHD. In addition, the two sides will continue to invest more in AV1, the next generation of coding technology.
At the end of his speech, Xu said that today, the environment and terminals are constantly changing. Besides, users have higher requirements for video services. Kingsoft Cloud hopes to have strong cooperation with video content service providers, in order to bring perfect enjoyment of video to every user.