Broadcast Beat Magazine 2017 NAB Show NY/SMPTE Special Edition - Page 27

EMBRACING THE CLOUD REVOLUTIONIZES MANAGED BROADCAST SERVICES By K.A. SRINIVASAN, CO-FOUNDER OF AMAGI T he global media landscape is changing rapidly with the advent of new technol- ogies and evolving audience needs. The boundaries are blurring between the tra- ditional TV broadcast and new-age platforms like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. Also, as the mil- lennial generation takes over the mantle of largest audience group, the geographical demarcation of content might also vanish. For example, a U.S. politics-focused drama such as “House of Cards” or, for that matter, “Game of Thrones,” today has a substantial audience following in countries out- side the U.S. To keep up with this changing real- ity, TV broadcasters and content owners need to scale up rapidly and make their content available simultaneously across platforms. Unfortunately, traditional, physical data center-oriented playout services might not be fully equipped to respond to the scale and speed requirements of such transition. Apart from this, the traditional services come at higher costs owing to their capex expo- sure and higher opex driven by physical, manual, and people-intensive operating models. What’s more, most of these traditional managed services have operations that are opaque, offering clients no real-time insights into or control over their broadcasts. So, TV networks are left to make programming adjustments after the fact, based on month-end reports. Further, many traditional managed broadcast service providers fall short of expertise to deliver both TV and OTT playout services under one roof, leaving broadcasters further constrained just as multiscreen viewing is catching fire. Replacing traditional managed broadcast ser- vices with a cloud-managed approach can over- come many of these limitations. By implementing an end-to-end managed services platform in the public/private cloud that encompasses content preparation, channel playout, content delivery, and monetization for both linear TV and OTT, broadcasters can scale up rapidly and deliver content innovatively. Automated, Full-Service Content Preparation Today, one of the biggest challenges to rapidly expanding broadcast operations is content seg- mentation. Preparing playout-ready content from thousands of hours of audio-video content is a labor-intensive process. Moving the content to the cloud makes it possible to integrate new-age cognitive capabilities and machine-learning tech- niques to reduce human intervention wherever possible, thereby driving scalability and increas- ing broadcast efficiencies. It also eliminates tech- nical challenges such as converting content from one format to other. Unlike traditional managed service providers, a cloud-based broadcast plat- form also provides complete visibility into the status of content assets in real time. Besides the benefit of automating manual and error-prone processes, a cloud-managed broad- cast platform gives TV networks a wide choice of third-party service providers and on-demand Broadcast Beat Magazine • • 27