Post Reply Video Playback issues
59466 cr points
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33 / M / Raleigh, NC
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Posted 3/6/14
I'd like to start by saying that I do truly enjoy your service and hope to continue supporting your company. However, I like many others have had considerable problems with watching videos on the site. The video will freeze multiple times during playback. I contacted support and have check all settings/configurations suggested by the Video help guide. http://www.crunchyroll.com/help/?topic=video Support

They couldn't figure out why the video was freezing both my computer and internet connection exceeded the requirements for the highest video quality (1080p) but I could barely steam 480 without having an issue. Imagine having to get up and push play on your DVD player every 5 minutes.

The last email I got simply stated that:

At this point there are unfortunately no further steps that we can take to resolve your issue at this time. I will pass your information and test results onto our Operations Team.

However, we would like to let you know that issues you are encountering have been known, and we are actively working on multiple solutions to provide you a better streaming experience in the future. We are currently working to enhance our Flash Player, so as to remedy the playback problems described.

We are also adding additional CDNs to help provide more robust serving, and a physically closer servers to your PC for when you do stream our content.

Our Operations Team is hard at work to bring you these enhancements in the near future, and we again appreciate your patience as we work on improving your connectivity experience. In the meantime, if you have a mobile, console, or set top box device you may experience better connectivity when watching our content through a Crunchyroll app.


This would be good news except that this seems to be a canned response and after hearing it for so very long it starts to become rather unbelievable. I highly value companies that are honest and open with their customers when they do have a problem. I would like to see more frequent updates about this issue and it's resolution in the near future and until it is resolved. Perhaps a Forum post or email announcement that can be opted in to. I'd like to get an idea of when these fixes will be implemented and keep updated on the situation as it changes. For example, Is this a staged roll out should I see service gradually improve or will it be a hard switch over? Also are there any plans for more device support specifically will you be supporting the Chromecast? I suspect that it would not have near the issues as a flash based solution.


Thank you for reading and I hope to hear back from you soon.


schale01
Member since March 2009
The Wise Wizard
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56 / M / U.S.A. (mid-south)
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Posted 3/7/14

schale01 wrote:

Perhaps a Forum post or email announcement that can be opted in to. I'd like to get an idea of when these fixes will be implemented and keep updated on the situation as it changes. For example, Is this a staged roll out should I see service gradually improve or will it be a hard switch over?

It has been stated before in this section of the forum that the CDN changes and new player were planned to be completed in the first quarter of this year, which of course ends in a few weeks.

I expect CR doesn't broadcast this far and wide because if it doesn't come off as planned, or there are major problems that pop up when deployed and it has to be quickly rolled back, they won't catch so much flack for it.


As I understand it, the ability to switch (automatically) between different CDNs depends on the new player, so while the backend for that will need to be in place first, the only benefit one might see without the new player is possible lower demand on your normal CDN server due to users with the new player being switched to others as problems are encountered.

Whether the player ends up being an incremental or "all or nothing" rollout no doubt depends on whether the code for the player is persistently cached on each users system, or is downloaded each time a new browser session is started. You might end up seeing the new player implemented with new simulcasts first (if CR is confident in its performance) or older videos first (if CR wants to be more cautious).


Although I don't have any significant problems with CR myself, I am hopeful these improvements will be implemented on schedule, and many of the streaming issues people have will be history by the time the new spring simulcasts start.
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