Support and Documentation

Latency

When a visitor wants to view an asset, the asset flows over a network from a Brightspot server to the visitor's device. As the asset traverses the network, blockages can occur that impact a visitor's experience. One blockage is latency—a delay that occurs when delivering an asset to a web browser or mobile app. When a network connection has high latency, visitors may experience slow loading of graphics or interruptions in video playback. A network connection with high latency may be frustrating to the point that a visitor eventually abandons your site.

Causes and symptoms of latency

When an asset needs to travel from a server to a browser, the intervening equipment slices the asset into small packets and sends them through routers. When the packets get stuck in a queue, or arrive out of sequence, or are dropped and must be resent, the perception of latency rises.

There are many causes of latency. Some of them are on the visitor's side: an old browser, a virus on a laptop, or a worn network cable. Some of them are on the publisher's side: old networking equipment or an improper server configuration. Other causes include general network load: a startling news event can draw an unusually high number of visitors to view content at the same time, resulting in long wait times.

Symptoms of a latent network connection include the following:

  • Browser displays a message that the network connection timed out.

  • Video replay is jittery or bursty.

  • Rendering a page's final layout takes a long time such that elements jump around until the entire page is loaded.

  • Images appear to unfurl, appearing a few rows of pixels at a time.

Content types susceptible to latency

Everything else being equal (such as networking equipment, devices, and software versions), a significant predictor of latency is file size. The larger an asset's size on a server, the more time is required to transport it over a network. The following table provides a comparison between different formats of a Brightspot product video Save time with the Brightspot quick start widget.

Format

Size

Preview

Contents

text

1,528 bytes (2 KB)

Today I'm going to be doing a demonstration on the Quick Start widget and the Brightspot CMS, and how they can save your time and your editorial workbook. So this is the main dashboard in Brightspot, and you can see here that my Quick Start widget is front and center across the top of my screen. There are two different things going on in the Quick Start widget. We've got templates that I can click on to create new content, so I can click this for an article or an author. And I've also got my actual homepage, so the content itself that I can pin here as well. So the idea is that you've got these options right at the top of your screen so you can get to content types very quickly, and you can choose what goes in this little widget. So you can see here, if I click this gear, I can hide certain content types. So let's say I don't want my blog post or attachment. I can also add other existing content. So I can find an article that I've been working on. Right click save. You can see here that my changes have been reflected. You can also choose which options show up in that menu in the first place. So if I go into my site settings, scroll down to dashboard. See here there's a common content settings. So if I want audio to show up, I can add that; I can also add other existing content there. Click save, go back to my dashboard, now you can see audio showing up there. So that's the Quick Start widget. It's a great way to pin content to the front and center of your dashboard and saving time acting as a shortcut.

Transcription of video

image

395,236 bytes (395 KB)

single_frame_from_video.png

Image of single frame

video

8,483,242 (8 MB)

2-minute clip

A short, 2-minute product video occupies 4,000 times the space on disk than its transcript, and a network connection must transport all of it from a server to a video player. The chances of getting the transcript through are higher than a video without individual packets getting stalled at some point in the network. This demonstrates why videos, audios, and high-definition images are more susceptible to latency than text.