Video is among the internet’s most popular brand of media. It’s estimated that more clips are uploaded in a month than the major U.S. television networks have created in 30 years, and roughly 87% of online marketers today use video content. Perhaps unsurprisingly, video traffic is projected to constitute 82% of all IP traffic by 2022, up from 75% in 2017.
The ongoing (and forthcoming) deluge drove Adam Brown, Jon Dahl, Matt McClure, and Steve Heffernan in 2015 to cofound Mux, a Y Combinator graduate and video tech and analytics startup headquartered in San Francisco. Today the company revealed that it’s raised $20 million in series B funding led by Evolution Media (the early-stage arm of TPG Growth) with participation from Accel and Y Combinator, bringing the company’s total raised to over $30 million following a $9 million round in April 2017.
CEO Dahl said the capital infusion will fuel product development and international expansion.
“Mux’s mission is to democratize video — the world’s most influential medium,” said Dahl, whose previous company — cloud encoding provider Zencoder, which he cofounded with Heffernan in 2007 — was sold to Brightcove roughly seven years ago. “We’ve designed a powerful API to video that empowers developers to build beautiful video experiences into their applications in hours instead of months.”
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To this end, Mux’s platform comprises a quality of service component that measures viewers’ video-watching experiences and an API for streaming using per-title encoding. Customers post the URL of any video file using the Mux API, at which point Mux ingests said file and creates a video asset to prepare it for streaming. Leveraging the playback ID and through virtually any video player (or through Mux’s own open source Video.js framework), Mux tailors videos to virtually endless devices and bandwidth ranges while generating metadata like thumbnails and frame-by-frame storyboards.
Mux’s analytics offering — Mux Data — spotlights live and historical metrics like playback and encoding failures and video quality. It alerts admins when something’s amiss and records playback down to the user level, with filters and dimensions for more granular tracking and a collated view that summarizes day-to-day and week-to-week performance.
For optimization work that’s less reactionary in nature, A/B testing and performance monitoring features enable content managers to pick players, content delivery networks, and ad servers that perform best for specific form factors. A built-in impact sorting tool lets them quickly spot problematic browsers, devices, regions, CDNs, players, ads, and videos, and a live streaming dashboard keeps them abreast of top titles by concurrent viewer, rebuffering by time watched, video startup time, and more.
Mux says it currently supports billions of streams and millions of viewers for customers like CBS Interactive, PBS, Vimeo, TED, Udemy, Daily.co, Crowdcast, Zeit, Wealthfit, Hush, Scale, Osmosis.org, Shred, and Metaverse.
“Working with Mux over the last few years has been a delight. The demand for developer-first video infrastructure is growing even faster than we had anticipated and the team at Mux is executing against the opportunity,” wrote Accel partner Dan Levine. “We’re excited to increase our investment in the company, and are looking forward to the next few years and beyond.”
Evolution vice president Gautam Shah added, “Developers are leading the charge in selecting technology they want to use and creating new industry standards. Mux’s developer-focused approach to managing the video infrastructure stack is changing the way companies monitor and manage video. We are thrilled to support the Mux team and leverage our experience in technology and content to help foster Mux’s growing developer community alongside the proliferation of content businesses.”
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