The most aptly named live-streaming company in the business, Livestream, is taking the wraps off its new Livepack — an all-in-one, backpack-sized device that enables live, mobile, HD-quality broadcasts.
The ruggedized device requires no laptop and comes with a touchscreen and six integrated 3G/EVDO modems from AT&T (s T), Verizon (s VZ) and Sprint that are bound together in a way to provide the highest possible available bit rate. Livestream CEO and co-founder Max Haot told us by phone that in a good coverage area users can get a solid 700kbps connection (it can go up to 1Mbps), in poor coverage areas, the six modems working together can provide a 300-400kbps.
The Livepack is integrated into Livestream’s platform to handle all of the video encoding and streaming, and it can be used by those with a free or a premium Livestream account. Just plug your camera into the device and you’re ready to broadcast. A single battery will deliver roughly 3 hours of use.
Livestream isn’t manufacturing the device itself; the company has partnered with LiveU for the hardware and to market the product to broadcasters. LiveU and Livestream are offering the Livepack on a rental basis: $2,500 a month with no contract, or $1,500 a month for a year contract with 30 hours of uplink time per month and all 3G and telecom charges included.
Haot sees events as a sweet spot for the Livepack, fitting in between super-high end broadcasters that have their own mobile facilities (like a TV network) and low-end UGCers making amateur looking content with mobile phones. “Event owners and organizers who put on an event — a sports event, community event, church event — they are realizing they can stream live for free or by investing a reasonable amount,” said Haot.
Livestream currently has 20 Livepacks available for rent, but LiveU has hundreds more units that could be called up. The Livepack is available now.