What is RTMP Live Streaming?

By Justin Alexa 8 Min Read

The real-time messaging protocol (RTMP Streaming) was the only way for the use of transmission of the video done on the internet. The parent element of this protocol is TCP, which has been designed to deal with low-latency connections.

The protocol is very important for some leading companies for its diverse usage as well as significant performance when it comes to quality live streaming.

RTMP Live Streaming


It is a type of communication technology which is mostly used backstage for the smooth streaming of video over the internet. Over the years, the working of the RTMP has gone very differently from the past.

Now, this protocol is mostly used as a primary element of the delivery of content from the encoder to the online video host. It is undoubtedly one of the most preferred choices of the best live-streaming services.

RTMP was basically developed for use in working with the adobe flash player. Its major functioning includes the transmission of audio, video as well as other types of data from the server to the player.

RTMP is important in terms of its proper working in live streaming, while its previous function has been slightly scaled back. Low-latency streaming is feasible, which is a huge benefit for broadcasters that are live-streaming important events.

It is also known for having little to no buffering, which greatly enhances the user experience. One of the finest techniques for distributing low-buffer streaming content is RTMP streaming.

Adaptive-bitrate streaming and some web conferencing solutions both utilise RTMP technology.

Key Highlights

Below are some of the key highlights of the messaging protocol, which will let you know its importance & significance for the streaming industry –

  • It well supports MP3 as well as AAC codes
  • The only drawback of this protocol is not supporting the format of HTTP, whereas its alternative options like HLS do.
  • It consists of different types of variations.
  • The service has been discontinued by it is still used by many events live streaming.


This series of events could occur practically instantly. Although RTMP ingestion is a fairly straightforward procedure, Macromedia no longer supports the protocol, which makes it more challenging.

These days, professional broadcasting contexts are where RTMP ingestion is most commonly used. While it can get sophisticated, the fact that it has long been a reliable and controlled technology for streaming video is one reason it persists. It can still be readily integrated with a reliable video hosting platform.

RTMP needs a three-way handshake to convey data because it is on top of the Transmission Control Protocol. (TCP). A connection is created when the initiator (client) requests it from the accepter (site), who then responds.

The initiator then acknowledges the accepter’s response and the session is maintained between the two or more parties. Because of this, RTMP is very reliable and is still used by live-streaming service providers.

Benefits of RTMP Live Streaming

Here are some of the proven benefits of this streaming protocol –

  1. Easy Integration process

Users of RTMP can combine numerous media kinds into a single source. This indicates that it is feasible to combine text, audio, and video.

Additional options for media platforms are also possible. For instance, RTMP can stream audio signals in MP3 and AAC formats.

  1. Flexible Nature

As the RTMP protocol is flexible enough, viewers can watch streams in whatever order they like. RTMP feeds allow for rewinding, skipping, and resuming where they left off rather than being needed to be viewed in a linear form. Compare this to the requirement that is fulfilled in a predictable way.

Best Alternatives to RTMP Streaming

Here is a list of some of the major alternatives of the RTMP streaming protocol-


  • It is defined as HTTP live streaming. It acts as a bridge between the transportation of audio & visual data from dedicated media servers to the user end.
  • Over recent years, the use of HLS streaming protocol has gained worldwide importance. It is mostly used by the best live-streaming platforms.
  • The features of HLS include – protection of data/ content, closed captions, alternate audio & video and much more.
  • HLS streaming protocol also works on low latencies which makes it the right choice for service providers.


  • It stands for web real-time communications. It is very dynamic and powerful in nature. It works on cutting-edge technology which makes it more compatible to use with HTML5.
  • There is no need to install the additional plugins into your browser while using this protocol. It is mostly used in the case of on-demand live streaming which supports all leading web browsers such as Chrome, Safari, Firefox etc.
  • With WebRTC users can directly embed real-time videos into browser-based solutions for the creation of engaging content.


  • SRT provides a few extra features specifically created for the video streamer. Since it comes with native support for separate AES encryption, stream security is controlled at the connection level.
  • Additionally, by enabling both send and receive modes, it enables users can easily cross firewalls all through the process (in contrast to both RTMP and HTTP which only support a single mode).

Summing Up

RTMP is loaded with immersive features that are still in use for leading services. But, over time its usage has brought down remarkably. Undoubtedly for many years, there was no competition whatsoever for this streaming protocol.

But, in recent years, live streaming services in India have gained very much popularity. Due to this, some alternatives have been discovered and these are taking control of the current scenario.

With the new emerging technologies as well as the RTMP live streaming protocol. Among such protocols, HLS, CMAF, and WebRTC are the most widely used. Additionally, by streaming using Ant Media Server, you may pick the optimum formats for your streaming platform’s highly scalable, flexible, and multi-device streaming.

The downfall of the old RTMP looks inevitable and will happen sooner or later. SRT and FTL will face off for the title rings. In the meantime, WebRTC will grow into the best streaming protocol over time and eventually take over the market.

Justin alexa
Justin Alexa

Justin Alexa is a seasoned blogger and professional writer with expertise in AI, cybersecurity, mobile, computers, and more. Explore the tech world with Justin's insightful and accessible articles, keeping you informed and inspired in the ever-evolving digital landscape. Join him on a journey of discovery, where complex tech concepts become clear and captivating.

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