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OPINION: Playout strategy calls for Cloud

Cloud has emerged as the most affordable, flexible and scalable approach to managed playout services, says KA Srinivasan, co-founder, Amagi

The broadcast environment is evolving rapidly, driving broadcasters to look for innovative technologies that optimise the delivery of video content. Broadcasters today are handling an increasing number of feeds being delivered to a plethora of viewing devices.

In addition, video content needs to be prepared in multiple formats to take into account regional preferences such as language or local advertising restrictions. To overcome these challenges, broadcasters require a playout strategy that is much more efficient and affordable than the traditional satellite- and fibre-based models.

The cloud has emerged as the solution to these needs, allowing for the seamless transport of television content, significantly reducing the cost of launching and running a channel. By leveraging cloud-based services for content delivery and playout management, broadcasters can now speed up the origination and distribution of content to platforms and affiliates anywhere across the world.

Platforms that utilise a hybrid architecture consisting of cloud-management and edge-playout solutions, enable content owners to speedily move assets through the internet, or transport content into the cloud infrastructure via portable storage methods. The assets are then transcoded on the cloud into required formats, archiving the content as needed.

Traditional asset management platforms, which store content in large proprietary data centres and tape archives, can often be cost-prohibitive to broadcasters. But asset management on the cloud allows broadcasters to store and archive all necessary content without requiring large capital investments.

A cloud-based approach to asset management also enables broadcasters to easily alter the content on demand, and reformat it for VoD and OTT multiscreen delivery. Additionally, with built-in replication, the cloud is disaster-resistant and provides easy collaboration across multiple sites.

The origination and playout of content through a cloud-management infrastructure is proving to be extremely beneficial for broadcasters. By hosting broadcast workflow capabilities on the cloud, including media asset management, quality control, subtitle editing and management, and automation and scheduling, broadcasters can speed up operations, increase flexibility, and
lower costs.

At IBC2015, Amagi is demonstrating the latest enhancements to its cloud-based playout and regionalisation platforms, which offer broadcasters a scalable, cost-effective, and flexible solution for disaster recovery and managed playout applications, streamlining the delivery of content to platforms and affiliates anywhere across the world.