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Amazon announces a new service that can help radio streamers

By James Cridland for media.info
Posted 1 August 2014, 7.45am edt

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Amazon Web Services this morning announced an upgrade to Route 53, Amazon's domain-name DNS server, which has practical benefits for streaming broadcasters.

A DNS server translates a humanly-readable address, like streams.example.com, into an IP address, like 192.0.2.111. That allows a computer to connect to your server and request your website or stream.

Amazon's new service, called Geolocation Routing, allows broadcasters to choose what listeners connect to, depending on where they are in the world.

For example, if your stream is at the end of streams.example.com, by using Amazon Route 53 to look after your DNS, you can make a listener in India connect to a different server than a listener in the UK. Or, indeed, not be able to listen at all.

Amazon says you can choose by continent, country, or US state.

This may help broadcasters cut streaming or music costs, or stay within the terms of their music licence. It may also offer a simple method to serve different content to overseas listeners. While not entirely unhackable, it appears a simple and cheap way to ensure that broadcasters serve their audiences while managing costs.

Amazon AWS has more information on Geolocation Routing.

James Cridland — James is the Managing Director of media.info, and a radio futurologist: a consultant, writer and public speaker who concentrates on the effect that new platforms and technology are having on the radio business. His website is at james.cridland.net, where you can subscribe to his weekly newsletter.
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