Amazon Interactive Video Service Player - Amazon Interactive Video Service

Amazon Interactive Video Service Player

To use Amazon Interactive Video Service (IVS), you must use the Amazon IVS Player. The Player is a cross-platform suite of SDKs for playback of Amazon IVS streams. It is designed to leverage the Amazon IVS architecture and optimized for Amazon IVS playback.

The only player whose performance we can guarantee is the Amazon IVS player. To achieve low latency, the Amazon IVS player is required.

Key features of the Amazon IVS player are:

  • Ultra-low-latency streaming — Low latency is a critical component in building good interactive user experiences that enrich the audience experience. Latency creeps in incrementally throughout the transmission path between broadcaster and viewer, eroding responsiveness.

    End-to-end latency is the delay from when a live stream is captured on camera to when it appears on a viewer’s screen. Amazon IVS is designed to deliver ultra-low end-to-end latency (under five seconds, depending on the broadcast location and broadcaster settings). To achieve this low latency, the Amazon IVS player is required.

  • Cross-platform consistency — Viewers watch broadcasts on a variety of platforms. From mobile devices to web browsers, the Amazon IVS Player gives all viewers a similar experience. This consistency is possible because every platform uses the same library of player functions. The player library is an integral component of the Amazon IVS architecture. Using one video stack ensures that all video-playback behaviors — including low-latency mode, timed metadata, analytics, error tracking, reporting, and logging — are available in a consistent way on all supported platforms.

  • Adaptive bitrate streaming (ABR) — The Amazon IVS Player uses ABR algorithms optimized for low-latency environments. The Player measures quality of service and bandwidth availability in real time and adapts video quality and buffer levels, to provide uninterrupted playback. When connection quality suffers, ABR switches to a lower bitrate; when connection quality improves, it switches to a higher bitrate.

  • Timed metadata — The Amazon IVS Player supports timed metadata, which can be used to build interactive elements such as polls and quizzes. Metadata is a set of data that describes and gives information about other data. With "timed" metadata, a timecode accompanies the piece of data about the stream. During playback, the timecode serves as a cue point to trigger action based on the data, such as:

    • Sending player statistics for a sports stream

    • Sending product details for a live shopping stream

    • Sending questions for a live quiz stream

  • Robust error handling — Handling transient errors well avoids interruptions in the viewing experience. The Amazon IVS Player’s robust error handling detects many potential streaming errors, automatically switching to an alternative rendition. Viewers continue watching the broadcast uninterrupted, without having to take any corrective action.

  • Ease of integration — The Amazon IVS Player API bridges the gap between Amazon IVS customers’ applications and the Player library. The API has bindings for all supported platforms, making it easy to integrate the Player into applications while using familiar coding environments and techniques. With full control over UI elements, customers can customize the branding and presentation aspects of their applications.

Browser & Platform Requirements

Desktop Browsers

Desktop Browser Supported Platforms Supported Versions
Chrome Windows, macOS Two major versions (current and most recent prior version)
Firefox Windows, macOS Two major versions (current and most recent prior version)
Edge Windows 8.1 and later

44.0 and later

(In auto mode on Microsoft Edge Legacy, only normal-latency playback is supported, not ultra-low latency playback.)

Safari macOS Two major versions (current and most recent prior version)

(In auto mode on Safari for macOS, only normal-latency playback is supported, not ultra-low latency playback.)

Mobile Browsers

Mobile Browser Supported Versions
Chrome for iOS, Safari for iOS Two major versions (current and most recent prior version)

(Ultra-low latency playback and timed metadata are not supported. Normal latency playback is supported.)

Chrome for Android Two major versions (current and most recent prior version)

Native Platforms

Platform Supported Versions
Android 5.0 (Lollipop) and later
iOS 10.0 and later

Support

If you encounter a playback error or other playback issue with your stream, determine the unique playback session identifier via the player API.

For this Amazon IVS player: Use this:
Android sessionId function
iOS sessionId property of IVSPlayer
Web getSessionId function

Share this playback session identifier with AWS support. With it, they can get information to help troubleshoot your issue.

Note: The Player is continually improved. See Amazon IVS Release Notes for available versions and fixed issues. If appropriate, before contacting support, update your version of the Player and see if that resolves your issue.

Versioning

The Amazon IVS Player SDKs use semantic versioning.

For this discussion, suppose:

  • The latest release is 4.1.3.

  • The latest release of the prior major version is 3.2.4.

  • The latest release of version 1.x is 1.5.6.

Backward-compatible new features are added as minor releases of the latest version. In this case, the next set of new features will be added as version 4.2.0.

Backward-compatible, minor bug fixes are added as patch releases of the latest version. Here, the next set of minor bug fixes will be added as version 4.1.4.

Backward-compatible, major bug fixes are handled differently; these are added to several versions:

  • Patch release of the latest version. Here, this is version 4.1.4.

  • Patch release of the prior minor version. Here, this is version 3.2.5.

  • Patch release of the latest version 1.x release. Here, this is version 1.5.7.

Major bug fixes are defined by the Amazon IVS product team. Typical examples are critical security updates and selected other fixes necessary for customers.

Note: In the examples above, released versions increment without skipping any numbers (e.g., from 4.1.3 to 4.1.4). In reality, one or more patch numbers may remain internal and not be released, so the released version could increment from 4.1.3 to, say, 4.1.6.

Also, version 1.x will be supported until the end of 2021 or when 3.x is released, whichever happens later.