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Custom RTMP

What is custom RTMP?

Custom RTMP is a feature often provided by live streaming software that lets you broadcast to any platform that accepts a stream key and server URL (also referred to as an RTMP URL).

Most major streaming software, like Restream Studio or OBS Studio, integrates with major platforms like YouTube Live, Twitch, Facebook Live, X (Twitter) and Kick, meaning you can simply connect your account to your streaming software and go live. For other, smaller platforms, you have to enter a stream key and RTMP URL in order to connect the platform to the streaming software.

This feature is often referred to as “custom RTMP” because it lets you stream to any platform of your choice, as long as it supports RTMP.

What is RTMP used for?

RTMP stands for Real-Time Messaging Protocol. It’s a video streaming technology used to transfer audio, video and data over the internet. RTMP powers live video streaming, live television and internet phone services. The protocol was first developed to support Adobe Flash Player, but today it’s primarily used for delivering video content to social media networks, live streaming platforms and media servers.

How to use custom RTMP

To use custom RTMP, you will need a streaming software that has the custom RTMP feature. Restream allows you to use custom RTMP, and you can set it up by following these steps:

  1. Log in to your Restream account.
  2. Select Add Destination.
  3. Select Custom RTMP.
  4. Enter the RTMP URL and stream key, which you can find on the platform you’re trying to connect to.
  5. Confirm by selecting Add Channel.

For more details, you can read our detailed instructions for connecting a custom RTMP channel to Restream. For most other streaming software, the process will be very similar to the steps described above.

Which platforms use RTMP?

Several platforms accept RTMP live streams as it’s practically become the standard for live streaming video over the internet. The types of platforms that accept RTMP include:

  • Social media networks: Facebook, X (Twitter), LinkedIn, Twitch
  • Virtual event platforms: GoTo Webinar, SpotMe, Livestream, Teams Live Event
  • Video players: YouTube, Vimeo, Dacast, Wowza, Crowdcast

Is RTMP still in use?

RTMP is still being used for first-mile delivery, or the first part of the live video streaming process. For last-mile delivery, however, it’s often being replaced by HTTP streaming. RTMP is still useful for transmitting video between an encoder and a server because it has low latency and can send the data extremely quickly. But it’s no longer a popular choice for delivering video from a server to a viewer’s device.

RTMP was developed for use with Flash Player, and since Adobe has ended support for Flash Player, HTTP is a more common choice for delivering video from a server to a viewer (last-mile delivery). RTMP had to rely on special streaming servers for last-mile delivery, whereas HTTP can use regular web servers.

You can read more about RTMP and how it’s used in our guide to RTMP streaming.