Mermaid Metaaso- Broadcast your own P2P Network

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Started by 5 engineers from Stanford, IITs and MIT in 2006. Mermaid recently launched the public version of their P2P product – Metaaso.

Unlike other P2P products, Metaaso is a serverless product and enables users to broadcast data/audio/video/text to several other machines without any heavy investment in infrastructure – all over your own private, secure peer-to-peer network.

Essentially, what this means is that you can create your own network, which can be uniquely identified by network id/pwd, and you can broadcast movies, webcam feeds, audio feeds, files to all those who are connected to your network.

What about the network speed? More people on your network, the better it is.

“No, you won’t need a heavy-tank computer or a gazzilion-terabytes/second network to stream to millions of people. The collective power of all the computers connected to your network will be harnessed. You can easily make do with an average PC and an average network.”

Sounds like bittorrent? With a significant difference that metaaso is pure P2P and doesn’t really require centralized supernodes.

5 of the products are released as of now in Beta. 9 more are ready and 12 more in the pipeline in half finished state. We believe in a free world with free speech. That’s what we do, we create systems without any central control or monitoring and enable the users to create content uninhibited and be heard by their friends around the world.
The systems cannot be taken down completely. If even 2 nodes are up the system will be functional. In the event of a global catastrophe the client/server systems will go down with loss of Internet connectivity but our systems will be up. We plan to release versions of our software for Linux/Unix’s/Mac’s and mobiles in that order

The only caveat is that you need IPV6 – whose global adoption is as dismal as the broadband in India – though one can always use Tunnel Broker, I am not sure how many of us would like to bet on that.

Aditya Yadav, co-founder/CTO had sent me the details about Metaaso around 2 weeks back, but it took me a while to publish this post – since I wanted to verify few things before publishing about them (thanks Rajiv for providing all the help).

For instance, Metaaso’s monetization is primarily based on:

  • Ads embedded in the product.
  • Enterprise services (corporate trainings, meetings, broadcasting surgical procedures, reporters from remote locations etc)

Ads in a desktop tool? First of all, these desktop tools are tagged as “adware” and secondly, you won’t find an ad network that supports desktop advertising. Aditya tells me that they had a tough time finding an ad partner, and finally CPX Interactive agreed to support them.

And all this with no sales force ! (Well, a difficult proposition to digest, but if they are able to crack the problem, hats off to them.)
The only significant sales channel is the promotional street shows that the team conducts in which they distribute free DVDs (distributed around 2,00,000 free DVDs in April, 08)

Metaaso’s annual revenue, as Aditya mentions is on the northern side of a mn$, and they have witnessed 10K downloads in the month of April alone!

The company hasn’t raised funds and is not looking towards raising fund.

As far as my feedback goes, I see it as pure technology and an awesome experience would be to create a consumer product out of it.

Give Metaaso a spin and do share your comments.
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