Video, at last

Posted: 13th Apr 2022

tl;dr: Video now works on the Asset Platform. We track its usage in total bandwidth per month. You'll need to update the Servd Plugin.

When we first built the Servd Asset Platform we made some technical decisions with the aim to create an affordable and easy to use storage solution for Craft uploaded assets whilst also integrating tooling such as off-server transforms and auto-optimisation.

One side-effect of the way we made this possible was that we couldn't allow the streaming of video files directly, due to their disproportionately high level of bandwidth use compared to everything else.

We've been on the lookout for an alternative solution which we could bolt on to our existing platform this entire time, and we've finally (!) found a solution that we think works for everyone economically, as well as remaining easy to use for our end users.

Not only that, but we've also included some special optimisations specifically for video files which will allow them to be cached within a global CDN efficiently. Allowing for video playback to start as quickly as possible once requested by a user.

Tracking Video Usage

We decided to take a different approach to tracking the usage of video files due to the bandwidth issues mentioned above. The total usage limitations on video files are therefore being tracked separately to all other assets, and usage caps are based on the total transferred bytes to end users, rather than 'hits' like everything else.

Every project has a soft video bandwidth limit which, once reached, informs you and us that you've reached your limit and that we should probably do something about it. We'll reach out to you to let you know what options are available.

If bandwidth continues to increase within the same calendar month, projects also have a hard cap on bandwidth usage. If this limit is exceeded videos will simply stop being served for the project until the bandwidth limit resets in the following calendar month.

Shortly we'll be creating a Plan Add On which will allow you to boost your available video bandwidth to raise these caps as needed - we're just figuring out the fine details on how we want to structure that.

Use it

You'll need to update to the latest version of the Servd plugin to get things working, but once you do video files should begin working without any additional changes.

We're looking forward to seeing how you end up using this new superpower. Moving pictures eh? What will they think of next?