Complex Live Streaming At Scale

Author: KitPlus

Published 3rd November 2019

Complex Live Streaming At Scale

On Saturday September 14th in the Content Everywhere Hub Theater at IBC, Zixi hosted a panel featuring partners and customers who have integrated with and utilized the Emmy-winning Zixi software for contribution and distribution of live video over managed and un-managed internet connections.

Panelists included: David Griggs, Senior Product Manager, AWS; Loic Barbou, Chief Architect for Bloomberg Media, Bloomberg; Timothy Stevens, Global Leader Vertical Marketing, Verizon; Joseph Nunwa, Senior Manager of Technical Distribution EMEA & APAC, Warner Media; Peter Gibson, Executive Director of Product, Comcast Technology Services. The panel was hosted by Zixi’s VP of Business Development, Eric Bolten.

The 40-minute panel featured a lively discussion on the state of IP contribution and how modern media companies are shifting towards IP for video transport due to its many advantages over more legacy models like fiber and satellite. Panelists gave their perspective on the latest challenges and opportunities facing the broadcast media industry, such as: live video contribution and distribution workflows, the importance of the cloud in media distribution, the effects of 5G technology on distribution, and the flexibility in managing, monitoring and orchestrating hundreds of professional quality video streams securely and at scale over IP.

Loic Barbou from Bloomberg stressed the importance of a flexible architecture in modern media workflows. “I believe in disposable infrastructure – the idea that you can change it and replace it, and you don’t have to re-engineer everything else. I think that’s the one thing, as a media organization, you have to have.”

David Griggs from Amazon Web Services emphasized the importance of how iterative software is critical to solutions that will make sense over the long-term. “6 months, 2 years from now, the landscape, when it comes to live streaming, can completely change. So I think a focus around software, around IP, gives you that agility, that flexibility to be more nimble when it comes to that inevitable change we’ll see in our industry.”

Another advantage of IP, stated Tim Stevens from Verizon, is enhanced customization at scale. “When you start to talk about an IP backbone, where you can multiply your content distribution over a number of different vehicles and channels, and then you can start to think about things like customizing content into very specific DMAs, you’re giving leverage and different capabilities and tools to broadcasters, and content providers that they never had before.”

Joseph Nunwa from Warner Media mentioned that tools like Zixi’s ZEN Master control plane are necessary to help bridge the gap between the skillset and monitoring services needed for IP-based solutions to be successful at scale: “Providing that centralized platform, bringing the analytics from your transport, bringing the parameters back from the edge, and giving the operators and the support teams the right information that they need to support the service that helps us get our content out.”

Peter Gibson from Comcast Technology Solutions agreed that visibility across the video network is key. “When your delivery is over IP, you do have a better opportunity to get into the APIs that give you better visibility, and help you understand where your content is, whereas in the past with terrestrial or satellite, you didn’t have that visibility at times.”

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