Updated: Dec 21, 2019
Livepeer is an under-construction open project that believes in enabling open-source code, combining creative contributions from people with diverse skill sets and interests. Hundreds of people from all facets of life have already contributed ideas, code, designs, and time to Livepeer. The Livepeer tokens are native tokens to the platform that are traded under the ticker symbol LPT. The initial distribution of the tokens was completed on October 2nd, 2018.
This post will discuss what Livepeer is all about, the reason it is designed for, the team behind it, how it works, and various uses and applications with a summary about where it is headed for in the future.
What Is Livepeer Designed For?
Livepeer platform is designed for video engineers as an affordable and reliable solution to video encoding. The platform leverages decentralization to offer and enable the business models, using cases that were earlier not possible through proprietary and centralized cost structures. It can be best described as a decentralized live streaming platform that is built using blockchain technology.
The Livepeer project is dedicated to creating a video transcoding and live video streaming platform for the decentralized web. Video streaming for companies comes out to be insanely expensive, going up to $4500 per month for one media server on the Amazon cloud server. High infrastructure costs compel aspiring social video startups to tax their users by selling their data, bombard them with ads, or shut down operations completely. Livepeer is the scalable solution to these problems.
Who Is the Team Behind Livepeer?
Livepeer is created by a team of dedicated specialists with experience in multiple facets. The founders of Livepeer are Doug Petkanics and Eric Tang. Petkanics is also the co-founder of Wildcard (a native publishing platform and browser for the mobile web) and Hyperpublic (a data platform built for organizing the world's local information.)
Tang worked as the CTO at Wildcard and is also a technical advisor to Transform Health.
How Does Livepeer Work?
Livepeer is a decentralized value network, which is open to many new types of third-party participants that go way beyond the regular investors and customers. Participants in the platform can assume the role of miner, delegator, and transcoder operator. The platform offers service for developers who want to add on-demand or live video to their project. It aims to increase the reliability of video streaming and reduce costs associated with it by up to 50 times.
The platform is designed to work as a p2p infrastructure that interacts through a marketplace, which is secured by the Ethereum blockchain. LPT token holders can bond their token towards a Transcoder on the platform to perform work on their behalf. This allows them to earn newly minted token and fees each day. Their engagement helps in growing the total ownership in the network.
LPT tokens are used by both Orchestrators and Delegators. Orchestrators are the people running the network by offering their services for transcoding and distributing videos, for paying broadcasters and developers on the platform. Delegators are LPT token holders who stake their coins towards Orchestrators on the platform. This allows the platform to remain secure, honest, and reliable.
Both Orchestrators and Delegators are awarded returns in the form of rewards for participation. A portion of the broadcaster fees is provided to both Delegators and Orchestrators as a reward, for ensuring that the network remains high-quality and secure.
Livepeer also mints new tokens over time in a similar fashion to Bitcoin and Ethereum block rewards, split amongst Delegators and Orchestrators in proportion to their total stake.
What are Current and Future Applications of Livepeer?
The basic function of the Livepeer Token is to coordinate, bootstrap, and incentivize the platform’s participants to make sure the Livepeer network remains cheap, effective, secure, reliable, and as useful as possible. The team behind Livepeer is hoping for adding a case for second-order services like content monitoring and creation. Livepeer is mainly for:
Developers – that are looking to build applications that include on-demand or live videos. They can use Livepeer to power their video functionality.
Users – Livepeer allows users to stream video, entertainment, gaming, coding, educational courses, and other types of content.
Broadcasters – They can use Livepeer to reduce costs or infrastructure overhead. For instance, Twitch who has a large audience and high streaming bills or infrastructure costs can make use of Livepeer to bring these costs down.
LPT, in the Livepeer protocol, is required to perform the work of transcoding and distributing video on the network. A user can perform more work on the network when they hold more LPT tokens. The demand for LPT is expected to grow as the network usage grows.