162 STREAMING MEDIA INDUSTRY SOURCEBOOK 2018
switcher, or encoding appliance. Destinations are your
various live-streaming outputs, which can include Facebook Live, You Tube Live, Periscope, and any RTMP-defined
Workflows assign destinations to each incoming stream
and inject titles and other
metadata into the stream so
this data is presented uniformly by the target services. Templates also allow you to control Stream Link, the switcher
within Switchboard Cloud,
which I’ll explain in a moment. Templates are prebuilt
workflows, so you don’t have
to build your workflows from
scratch each time you go live.
Seven Steps to
Here’s the step-by-step process to use:
1. Configure the incoming streams.Switchboard works
with two kinds of streams: direct inputs from actual
encoders, and Stream Link, which are links to incoming streams. As you can see in Figure 2, I’ve configured two direct inputs, interviews on the left and sessions on the right. On the right is a Stream Link input,
which can deploy either of the
two direct inputs and switch
Stream Links serve two purposes. First, once you assign
destinations to a Stream Link
stream (which you’ll do in step
2), you can switch inputs very
simply, in our case from sessions to interviews. If you assign a destination to a fixed
input, either interview or session in our example, then you
can’t easily switch the input.
Second, Facebook prohib-
its streaming products and
services that use the Face-
book API to stream to Face-
book Live using the API while
simultaneously streaming to
other sites using their APIs.
So, if you want to stream the
same content to Facebook
Live and other services us-
ing their APIs, you have to set up two inputs, one via
the original and the other via Stream Link, or set up
multiple Stream Link sources.
As you can see in both the direct inputs in Figure 1
(Interviews and Sessions), Switchboard Live provides
the familiar RTMP address for input, with the stream
name just below, but cropped out of the figure for space
considerations. As with any streaming destination, you
just copy and paste these into your encoder to start
This shows how Switchboard works and what its operational concepts are.
Configuring the input streams. Stream Link is on the right, and can easily switch between Interviews and Sessions.