Category Archives: TV

Google adds media capabilities with Anvato purchase

Google AvantoGoogle has bolstered its capabilities in the video streaming market through acquiring video platform Anvato which will join its cloud business unit.

Anvato provides a software platform that fully automates the encoding, editing, publishing and secure distribution of video content across multiple platforms. The acquisition will improve Google’s capabilities to recruit media companies to its cloud storage business, in the long-term quest to gain ground on Microsoft Azure and AWS in the cloud market segment.

“Anvato’s Media Content Platform, which counts many large media companies as customers, will complement our efforts to enable scalable media processing and workflows in the cloud,” said Belwadi Srikanth, Senior Product Manager at Google. “The cloud is transforming the way video content is created and distributed to an array of connected devices, as well as the way users engage with this content. And in recent years, the adoption of over-the-top (OTT) technologies has emerged as a critical platform for delivering rich audio, video and other media via the Internet.”

Offerings such as Anvato’s have been pushed to prominence in recent years as more video content moves into the OTT category. Google already counts a number of media outlets as customers, including Sky News and Spotify, though the continuing OTT trend will generate more demand for cloud services. The Anvato purchase will add several other media heavy hitters to the customer list such as NBCUniversal, Univision, Scripps Networks, Fox Sports, Media General.

“We are thrilled to bring together Anvato with the scale and power of Google Cloud Platform to provide the industry’s best offering for OTT and mobile video,” said Alper Turgut, CEO at Avanto. “This will allow us to supercharge our capabilities, accelerate the pace of innovation, and deliver tomorrow’s video solutions faster, enabling media companies to better serve their customers.”

IBM announces four new clients for video business unit

Curved video wallIBM has revealed four new client wins for its video business, IBM Cloud Video, a couple of hours ahead of its quarterly earnings announcement.

Speaking at NAB Show, the company announced Comic-Con HQ, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, AOL and Broadway Video will now all be utilizing the IBM video platform. The company expects the market to exceed $100 billion in the next three years, as well as digital video to account for 80% of all internet traffic by 2019.

“IBM is at the forefront of the industry at a time when video is the driving influence in how organizations communicate, share information, and entertain,” said Braxton Jarratt, General Manager of the IBM Cloud Video business unit. “Today’s announcements will be viewed as a significant milestone in the company’s cloud video strategy, as IBM makes the sharing, distribution, and management of video increasingly simple across any device.”

IBM announced the acquisition of Ustream in January though financials of the agreement were not disclosed. Ustream created a cloud model to support live and on-demand video streams and claimed to have 80 million viewers per month from customers including NASA, Samsung, Facebook, Nike and The Discovery Channel. The IBM Cloud Video business unit was formed by the combination of IBM’s R&D dollars alongside acquisitions of Clearleap, Ustream, Aspera and Cleversafe.

The deal with Comic-Con HQ will offer numerous services including subscriber and content management, billing, and video compatibility on multiple devices. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation will be using IBM’s tech to support its next-generation, ad-supported streaming video service. AOL will be using transfer and automation software from Aspera (an IBM company) to power its media management platform.

The news comes ahead of the company’s quarterly earnings, in which analysts expect IBM to announce further revenue declines. The company has reported revenue declines for 15 straight quarters, though these trends have been witnessed by several tech giants who have been primarily associated with now-legacy IT, not only IBM. The move into cloud computing is seemingly one of a number of strategies set in place for IBM to counter negative growth, and carve a new niche in the digital ecosystem.

Cisco claims new Infinite cloud can deliver video services in 90 days

iptv_webCisco has unveiled its new Infinite range of cloud-powered video services aimed at service providers, broadcasters and media companies. It claims the cloud could cut the delivery time for a new video service from 12 months to 90 days.

The first two services in the range to be released are Infinite Home and Infinite Video. Home will deliver linear, on-demand and time-shift TV video to any screen over two-way cable and telco networks. Infinite Video offers the same service, but is geared to cater for a variety of consumer electronics devices reached over unmanaged mobile Internet connections.

Cisco claims its new efficiencies will make the tests, trials and roll-outs of new services quicker for service providers and make service updates easier. This, claims Cisco, will improve the subscribers’ experiences, cut costs and boost revenue for broadcasters.

Broadcasters can now launch a new video service in 90 days, according to Cisco, because the networking technicalities have been dramatically simplified by the new cloud infrastructure. Once running, service improvements that once took months can now be completed in minutes, because the functions are no longer installed on individual devices, having been centralised on the cloud infrastructure. This makes addressing changes a lot less complicated and time consuming. Advances in cloud orchestration software have also helped automate and simplify configuration and activation even further, Cisco said.

With the pace of management quickening, service providers will get a faster delivery of new features. The Infinite systems will be pre-integrated and will use open-source components with open application programming interfaces.

Getting video services to market quickly is crucial to today’s video operators, said consultant Colin Dixon, digital media analyst at nScreen Media. “This is exactly the type of technological approach needed. That agility will have huge implications.”

The Infinite Home service was used in beta trials by service provider Kabel Deutschland. “The platform moves control and functions into the cloud, making it quick and easy to update and offer new services,” said user Florian Landgraf, senior VP at service provider Kabel Deutschland.