Broadcast Beat Magazine September, 2015 - Page 48


As more companies turn to the cloud as a way to streamline workflows and cut costs, every vendor seems to offer some type of cloud solution. The benefits, enabling teams to collaborate across geographies and time zones and making media centrally accessible, can transform workflows. But like any big industry shift, innovations

are happening as fast as the transition and keeping on top of the considerations while continuing to move forward can be a big challenge for broadcasters and content creators. We’d like to help clarify some of the big issues – to bust a few common myths and help you get to a solution that delivers on all that the cloud promises.

Myth 1: We need to invest in our IT infrastructure and staff to support a move to the cloud

False! The basic premise of working in the cloud is that you can access media and collaborate remotely without having to build out your own IT infrastructure to do so. The cloud vendor maintains the infrastructure and you get the benefit of their continual development, and of scaling and provisioning on demand and without limit. Where the confusion comes from here is that some vendors offer solutions that are essentially ‘private cloud kits’ – hardware and software that enable remote media access on infrastructure that you own and maintain. Your capital investment in a true cloud solution should be minimal; even zero. Look for a solution that is video-centric, not IT-centric and doesn’t require you to hire or train additional IT staff to set up and administer.

Busted! Public cloud solutions like Amazon’s S3 or Microsoft’s Azure are not alone in their ability to deliver the bandwidth you need for cloud-based workflows. There is a new category of ‘vendor cloud’ solutions, where the vendor owns and operates all of the equipment in its own cloud datacenters, features and security are purpose-built for professional video, and speeds and capacity can exceed those of public cloud solutions. For example Aframe’s ‘vendor cloud’ is optimized to enable even remote users working on 3G or 4G connections to play back media and make review notes successfully. Also, keep in mind that the big public cloud solution vendors typically charge for uploads and downloads, which can make uploading even a single TV show master super expensive, never mind a day-to-day workflow reliant on them. Public cloud solutions also share their bandwidth across a huge cross-section of industries and customers, including the general cat-video-watching public.

Myth 2: Only big public cloud vendors like Amazon and Microsoft offer the band-width required for pro video

One more tip – there are also ‘hybrid cloud’ solutions out there, software purpose-built for video file sharing and collaboration that utilize a separate underlying server network that the software vendor does not own/maintain. While these solutions don’t place any IT burden on you, they can optimize speed, features and security only to the level that their underlying platform can support, and you may have multiple points of contact to work through any issues.

by Rory McVicar


IBC Issue September 2015