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What is IceCast ??
IceCast Hosting is a streaming audio solution which permits anyone to broadcast audio to listeners across the internet. You basically become your own radio station, but instead of broadcasting through radio waves, you broadcast through the internet. Your listeners can tune in through any supported media player, such as Windows Media Player, Winamp, iTunes, RealPlayer, etc.
Complete Feature List
The following is a complete list of features available in IceCast Plans:
- Feature-rich web-based administrative interface for managing streaming servers.
- Complete web-based client control panel for starting/stopping and configuring streaming servers.
- Data transfer and listener statistics, complete with graphs.
- Streaming server start page
- Amazon integration for CD covers and buy-now links
- Song request support
- Support for on-demand content
- Basic DJ add on service (Server-Side Source Support) All-in-One Streaming Radio
- AJAX media library and playlist manager
- Multiple playlist support Track preview option in media library browser
- Weighted general rotation playlists
- Timed-interval and song-interval playlists (for station identification, commercial advertisements, etc.)
- Scheduled playlists (for countdowns, etc.)
- Immediate "play-now" playlists
Client Self-Management :: Easy-to-Use Client Control Panel
Ice Cast reduces support calls by providing an easy-to-use web-based control panel to each client, allowing the client to manage his or her own streaming server account on demand. Clients can stop and start their servers, manage their server configuration, view data transfer and listener reports, review logs, and obtain access to a variety of information and statistics about their streaming servers.
Stream Start Pages
The features of the start page include:
- On-demand content browser. This new feature allows the stream owner to publish a set of tracks for on-demand playback by listeners. This is an ideal way to offer podcasts or other freely-distributable media to visitors on an on-demand basis.
- Recent track list. This provides a list of recently-played tracks. Amazon.com integration is supported, and if enabled, the album cover is displayed along with a link to purchase the album from Amazon.com. Each purchase is credited toward the stream owner's Amazon.com affiliate account, making this an ideal revenue-generation opportunity for the stream owner.
- Song requests. Listeners may submit requests which are E-mailed directly to the stream administrator.
- Tune-in links for common media players. Clicking any of these icons tunes in to the stream using the corresponding media player.
- The current track, and stream status. This is updated in realtime using AJAX technology to ensure that it is always accurate. Clicking the song title launches the stream.
Basic DJ (Server-Side Source Support) All-in-One Streaming Radio
In addition to providing total control over your streaming server, Ice Cast also provides complete Basic DJ as an add on service. Never again will you need to rely on their own PC to broadcast your stream!
If enabled, server-side source support allows clients to upload their media (MP3s, etc.) directly to the server via FTP, and manage their playlist through Ice Cast web-based client interface. Ice Cast then uses Ices streaming source applications to source the stream, keeping the entire broadcast self-contained on your server. Setting up a streaming radio station couldn't be easier!
AJAX Media Library
Ice Cast brand new, AJAX-based media library system brings the convenience and usability of a desktop media player's song management interface to the web.
The layout of the interface is reminiscent of the media library functionality provided by many common desktop media players. Selecting an artist displays a list of the artist's albums. Selecting an album displays all tracks available from that album. Tracks can be searched by artist name, album name, track title, and genre. Not sure if you've found the right track? Clicking the preview button plays a 10-second clip of the selected track.
Once the desired track(s) have been located, adding them to a playlist is as simple as dragging and dropping them onto one of the playlists listed to the left.
This new media library interface goes hand-in-hand with Centova Cast's new track scheduling features, described below.
Multiple Playlist Support
Multiple playlists are now supported for each stream. Each playlist can be configured and enabled (or disabled) independently, allowing fine-grained control over media scheduling and playback. Four different playlist types -- general rotation, interval, scheduled, and immediate -- are supported. Each is described in the following sections.
General Rotation Playlists
General rotation playlists handle the bulk of the media played on your stream. Multiple general rotation playlists can be created, and a different priority or "weight" can be assigned to each playlist to control how often its tracks are played.
General rotation playlists provide functionality similar to that of a terrestrial radio station, wherein more popular or newly-released "heavy rotation" tracks are played very often (e.g., several times per day), whereas less popular "light rotation" tracks are played less frequently (e.g., once per week).
By placing your popular tracks in a playlist with a "heavy" weight, and your less popular tracks in a playlist with a "lighter" weight, you can achieve fine-grained control over the frequency with which your tracks are played.
Interval playlists play on a recurring basis, either every few minutes, or every few songs.
Interval playlists are ideal for jingles, station identification, commercial advertisements, promotions, or any other media that needs to be played frequently and repeatedly. Simply add your commercial advertisements (or other media) to the playlist, specify an interval (after every 3 songs, for example, or perhaps every 30 minutes), and Ice Cast will automatically insert the media into your stream at the appropriate times.
Scheduled playlists play on a specific date, at a specific time. They can optionally be configured to repeat every day, week, month, or year on a recurring schedule.
Scheduled playlists are ideal for daily/weekly countdowns, pre-recorded shows, weather forecasts, or any other media that needs to be scheduled in advanced and played at a specific time. Simply add your media to the playlist, specify a date and time, and Ice Cast will automatically play the playlist at the appropriate time.
Immediate playlists play immediately when they are activated. Simply add your media to the playlist and set its status to "enabled", and Ice Cast will play the playlist immediately after the current track ends.
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