Published on December 21, 2020 (over 3 years ago)

Mux in 2020: a (very strange) year-end review

Jon Dahl
By Jon Dahl3 min readCompany

I know it’s a cliche, but: wow, what a year. "Hope you're staying positive and testing negative," as we've all written in about 75,000 emails.

A lot happened in 2020 at Mux. Here are some highlights.

New features. We started the year by releasing Closed Captions in Mux Video, and followed that with storyboards, CDN redundant live streams, new APIs (enable/disable live stream, delete all), program date-time tags (beta), clipping (beta), and dozens of optimizations for scale, performance, and reliability.

Mux Data got significantly more powerful this year, with advanced filtering, real-time APIs, real-time incident investigation, more metrics, and an entirely new custom alerting system to help quickly understand exactly what’s happening with video streaming, while it’s happening.

We thought 2019 would be the year of Low Latency live video, but Apple threw a wrench in that. We then hoped 2020 would be the year, but the Apple spec took more time to figure out. It’s ready now, this space in 2021.

COVID response. Before lockdown, we wrote about how to host your own online conference, not fully comprehending the gravity of that post. (Amazingly, the post doesn't even mention the virus.) We moved to work-from-home in early March and rolled out a "remote-equal" policy a few months later. Demuxed Europe was cancelled in May, and the first-ever online Demuxed was awesome a few months later. Ed told you how to sound good on Zoom.

Successes! A third party confirmed that Mux is a Best Place To Work. Mux Data monitored our second Super Bowl, with great success (and an incredible new data backend). We grew... A LOT.

Failures! Bay Area Rapid Transit accused us of pretend hacking. Timeouts (and 50x live video growth) are hard.

Random! Color is weird.

Mux itself. We took ownership of our blog and redesigned our website. We launched as an open-source project. This summer, we raised some money to help us grow faster. Speaking of which...

Growth. 30 excellent new hires, nearly doubling the team. Almost 10x growth to Mux Video ingest and delivery. About 100% growth to Mux Data, and Mux Data is now literally tracking full integer percents of all online video.

Hours of video delivered by Mux in 2020.

LinkMux in 2021

So what will next year hold? After 2020, it feels irresponsible to predict anything, but here are five goals for next year.

  1. Launch a new product or two. (Any guesses?)
  2. Double our team again. (We're hiring!)
  3. Low Latency live. For real this time.
  4. See each other. Next year, we will hopefully return to some level of office presence, while continuing to work remote-equally. If you ask me what I’m looking forward to in 2021, it’s getting the whole team together from around the world for our first all-company event since the Before Times.
  5. Keep growing. There is a lot of video out there that needs better data and better streaming, and we're excited about all the new projects and new companies that will get going in 2021. We started Mux to democratize video—one of the hardest infrastructure problems today, and the world’s most powerful communication medium—and we can't wait to see what you build.

Written By

Jon Dahl

Co-founder of Zencoder, acquired by Brightcove, where Jon served as VP Technology. Makes better BBQ than code these days.

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