Category Archives: cloud video

IBM buys streaming service Ustream to boost its cloud video portfolio

IBM2IBM has announced another cloud video acquisition with the intention to purchase video streaming service provider Ustream. The new acquisition will become part of IBM’s Cloud offering to enterprises. Financial details were not disclosed.

Ustream has developed a cloud model to support live and on-demand video streams. It currently has 80 million viewers per month from customers including NASA, Samsung, Facebook, Nike and The Discovery Channel. It has a San Francisco base and a development office in Budapest, Hungary with data centres in California, Amsterdam and Tokyo.

The newly-formed IBM Cloud Video Services unit is now comprised of IBM’s R&D labs and acquisitions such as Clearleap, Ustream, Aspera and Cleversafe, as well as its own R&D inventions.

In December BCN reported how IBM had bought video service provider Clearleap which aims to create APIs for every type of device on which video can be watched. The unit will offer video services including open API development, digital and visual analytics, management and a promise of consistent delivery across global industries.

In addition IBM’s R&D has led to 1,000 patents of its own in areas such as visual analytics and indexing and searching large collections of videos and digital images.

The foundation of the Ustream portfolio is the open Ustream Development Platform which helps clients to create custom video apps to run video on any device and embed video into any application. IBM will integrate Ustream’s development platform into Bluemix to allow clients to provide distinct video services to developers.

The Ustream portfolio includes Ustream Demand, which lets marketers collect and automate leads into marketing workflows and Ustream Align, for secure internal employee communications. Ustream Pro Broadcasting offers large scale live video streaming.

Unit General Manager Braxton Jarratt said IBM estimates there is a target market for cloud-based video services and software worth a potential $105 billion, because companies now communicate with customers and employees through video, webcasts, conference keynotes, training and customer care. Since video is expensive to manage and provide, Upstream’s understanding of how cloud computing can help rationalise costs is invaluable, according to Upstream CEO Brad Hunstable. “We’ve built a video platform that is easy-to-use, yet incredibly scalable and powerful. It is these qualities that made us an ideal addition to IBM’s portfolio,” said Hunstable.