An Edinburgh-based technology start-up claims to have hit upon a way of dramatically reducing the time taken to download video files over the internet.
Eoovi, co-founded by Paul Gardiner and Brian Higgins, said its technology can deliver a reduction of more than 80 per cent in file sizes and download times over standard phone lines, making the roll-out of fibre-optic broadband infrastructure “potentially redundant”.
We know without doubt it is set to revolutionise the internetPaul Gardiner
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A report by industry regulator Ofcom, published in December, revealed that internet access speeds of 30 megabits per second or higher were now available to 83 per cent of Scottish premises, up from 73 per cent a year earlier, though take-up remains low.
Many consumers north of the Border remain unable to access broadband with “acceptable speeds”, Ofcom noted. About 7 per cent of Scottish properties cannot get a download speed of 10 megabits per second or more.
Eoovi said that its system could deliver a “global first” by enabling customers to play an ultra-high definition 4K video over a one megabit per second connection.
Edinburgh-based Gardiner said: “The platform we have built is tested and it works, but we are not at liberty to share how we do it as this area of the market is open to all types of technology espionage from large global brands who potentially, once they fit the pieces together, could beat us to the market.
“But we have been working on this day and night for three years and only focused on one goal, and now with full testing done we know without doubt it is set to revolutionise the internet.”
He added: “While developing the platform we have managed to get a compression percentage of around 80 per cent of original file size, and in some circumstances as much as 93 per cent has been reached.”
Eoovi is initially seeking to launch as a subscription-based video compression service, targeting content creators on other platforms such as YouTube, before rolling it out to film and television companies and telecoms networks to provide an “integrated experience” through smart TVs, mobile apps and websites.
Its longer-term goal is to licence the software to other industries, for example in the transmission of medical imagery in the healthcare sector or enabling the defence sector to use smaller antennae in drones, reducing the overall size of the remotely-operated vehicles.
Higgins, who is based in Manchester, said: “The Eoovi platform is designed to enable an 80 per cent-plus reduction in file size and download time. If we were to use an athletics analogy it’s like Usain Bolt dipping over the finishing line in the 100 metres while his competitors are just coming out of their starting blocks.”