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up from 57% in 2014. In the television industry. You Are Cloud-Ready By Stan Moote 6 A Software-Defined Future for Broadcast? By James Careless T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 8 Four Steps to Moving to IP-Based Video Production By James Careless . the vast majority of video still exists in a baseband/SDI format and transitioning to an all IP ecosystem will take time.EDITOR’S PAGE MAKING THE CASE: TELEVISION’S INEVITABLE TECHNOLOGY TRANSITION TO IP T he signs are everywhere— television is moving to IP. whose annual Visual Networking Index predicts that globally. We hope you find the discussions in this ebook stimulating and informative. sponsored by Cisco. Here a few more statistics from that report to ponder: Internet video to TV will continue to grow at a rapid pace. Consumer VoD traffic will double by 2019 with HD comprising 70% of IP VOD traffic in 2019. consumer internet video traffic will be 80% of all consumer Internet traffic in 2019. But perhaps the most compelling reasons come from Cisco. While the cost savings may not be initially evident. up from 64% in 2014. On the distribution side. audio. managing existing content and helping broadcasters fulfill consumers’ mandate of providing any content to any device at any time. up from 16 percent in 2014. and ancillary signals—will help broadcasters maintain quality and reliability in the transition. the rapid increase in OTT services as well as advances in fiber deployments have helped expand and diversify the options consumers have in how they access their favorite programs as well as news and sports. By 2019. n Tom Butts Editor-in-Chief TV Technology CONTENTS 3 Finding Safety And Productivity In the Cloud By Ian MacSpadden 2 5 Believe It or Not. Behind the scenes. 72 percent of all Internet video traffic will cross content delivery networks. up from 59% in 2014. Internet video to TV traffic will be 17% of consumer Internet video traffic by 2019. Moving to IP is not as easy as it sounds. in terms of archiving original content. including raising the question of whether or not your facility is “cloud-ready” and examining the technology behind software-defined networks. Many of these terms were practically unknown to the broadcast market as recently as five years ago. we take a look at several aspects of this transition. broadcasters and related media enterprises are looking at new developments in cloud-based and virtualization technologies and realizing the benefits of software-defined networking and SaaS (software as a service) offerings. We are an industry built on standards and new products based on the SMPTE-2022-6 standard—which defines a unidirectional IP-based protocol for the transport of real-time video. and we welcome your feedback on this important topic. Why move to an IP-based environment? The reasons are obvious: IP offers unprecedented scalability and flexibility in launching new channels and efficiently operating existing ones. The cloud is also increasingly important to broadcasters. a testament to the accelerating pace of change. increasing fourfold by 2019. In this ebook. the payout in terms of quicker reaction time to market changes and expanded services for consumers pays off in the end.

A private or self-hosted data center is a singular location using a specific number of machines. satellite coming online that could deliver terabytes of data for his subscribers as an example.FINDING SAFETY AND PRODUCTIVITY IN THE CLOUD Broadcasters seek ‘business agility’ By Ian MacSpadden F or anyone who doubts the ability of cloud-based systems to handle large-scale broadcast and media production capabilities. which has been using a cloud-based distribution model for more than five years. as examples of why broadcasters should be leveraging the security and robustness of cloud-based solutions and not relying solely on internal systems. but to. SaaS solutions have to create an ecosystem comprising connectivity.” but where a SaaS (software as a service) solution takes the service and it refers to how a software-based process can run across multiple spreads the processing across multiple locations.” Smith said. Dave Rosen.” he said. thinks cloud-based systems are the future. SECURITY VS. such profor many data and content-based companies. computing power.” said Jim Brihan. Solutions and Business Development at Sony. and still provide an acceptable level of security? Jim Martinolich. and is never tied to a specific or needs. Ian Fletcher. thinks the critical question that broadcasters and related media enterprises need to ask is. software continues to take over many of the functions in media production. So the question arises: How can media companies find the means to focus on their core content creation model. CTO for Grass Valley. “Cloud providers have the skills and resources to make their platthe traditional method of downloading everything locally.” he said. a Boston-based provider of weather systems. with clients and partners asking what managed across local facilities and the cloud.into existing workflows so content can be day it is the other way around. “If I am in the business of making movies.” This may sound as nebulous as the term “cloud. The only way to efficiently and cost effectively provide that data is through an on-demand pull model. Amazon.” we have in the SaaS space. CTO for Cloud Technologies why more companies aren’t turning to the cloud. director of product management for forms robust and secure. explains that true cloudbased services are not hosted by a specific machine but rather by a sense. He sees an on-demand model replacing the original push model what they do.” Fletcher said. often with very finite resources that are able to only scale to the resources at hand. He feels the market now —Alex Grossman Quantum demands business agility that only cloud-based systems can provide. leverage the computing and storage capacity of the cloud. WSI.” Due to their sheer global size and resources. “Last year customers were not sure about the technology. referring to a new NOAA ´ T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 3 . He noted a change in the level of acceptance as broadcasters become better educated “It’s important that the cloud be integrated about the types of systems and their benefits. vice president. vice president of integration technologies for ChyronHego. “That is what they do and only WSI. “A lot of vendors are talking about cloud services in a broad at Imagine Communications in Dallas. ISOLATION Today. and storage. when the New York Stock Exchange shut down for three hours and a computer failure at United Airlines caused havoc with airline schedules. To manage the business’ hardware and software. I shouldn’t be building data centers and trying to keep bad guys out. and IBM are fully Fletcher sees confusion about how cloud Dave Rosen scalable and geographically diverse. whether it was used or not. “What business should I be in?” He explains that public cloud providers have already given businesses across the board an ability to get back to their core competencies. is using SaaS to manage its huge amounts of data and deliver only what the client machines in multiple locations. points to the July 8 failures. A virtualized service is one that is taken offsite to a single location “something. and virtualized systems differ as the reason Steve Smith. “You have access to more data from a cloud-based service than singular device or group of devices. A public data center like INCREASING ACCEPTANCE those of Microsoft. recent high-profile localized system failures at the NYSE and United Airlines should have them taking notice.

“The smallest company to the largest media conglomerate have the same access and cost for access.” said Smith. an IBM company.” said Fletcher. Systems like WSI’s cloud-based weather system provides users an interface to choose what material and data they need. n BEGINNING WITH A HYBRID Nevertheless. it’s important that the cloud be integrated into existing workflows so content can be managed across local facilities and the cloud. but that group will eventually phase out. is one of the hardware and all new ones will be cloud-based. One of the greatest benefits that Sony’s Rosen sees in SaaS is the great equalizer that cloud computing presents. broadcasters who add an OTT model could quickly allows us to have more data available as we don’t have to push every. “The handwriting is on the wall.” THE NEW PARADIGM “I believe broadcast is dead and we are moving towards a unicast personalized experience. In the future. broadcasters can also swiftly respond to fluctuating demands without making complex technology investments. Calif. we don’t want it. while taking control and processing services off the premises.” Brihan said. “We see a lot of requests for our services for Imagine Communications these time-bound events.” In fact data centers are less a hacking target than media enterprises. Over time WSI plans to migrate all current products to the cloud distribution model.” he said. transcode. providers for the local data management portion of a hybrid model.” said Richard Heitmann. They could then offer tiered on-demand or live offerthing to the station. rity of the localized portion of ingest and playout. Aspera. This means that a small company that can’t afford its own IT expert as well as a large corporation that can employ dozens. while older viewers. Even if the Internet connection is lost the cost-effective and secure way of creating virtual distribution chandata previously downloaded would all still be available locally and nels when they are needed and provide revenue streams not currently available. “This 4 T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E . still partake in the traditional push model of broadcast. media and entertainment for Quantum. especially with sporting events. ready to play out. ranging from securely archiving owned content to expanding IP delivery capabilities. “ Smith said. who sees high-bandwidth transfers remaining on the premises. as hackers are often looking for the easiest system to get into. “I think with the spectrum repack we will see some of the smaller Steve Smith broadcasters moving to a pure OTT play. The functions for big “I believe broadcast is dead and we are moving events (broadcast. adding that his clients’ existing expensive dealing with ownership of legacy hardware.content at a premium. is already supplying SaaS services to broadcasters. certain things don’t make sense to do in the cloud.’ But many now realize that they cannot build a data center as well as Amazon or Microsoft.spin up channels for local or national events with strong social media ties-ins. selection and distribution. This “hybrid model” provides the benefits of leveraging cloud ings from free content with commercials to commercial-free UHD computing for data aggregation. for the most part.-based Quantum Corp. but keep. This model hardware has to phase out over time and allow a phasing in of a newer makes for a more nimble entry and exit into new businesses. San Jose. as are our customers. “The virtually unlimited scalability and OPEX-based cost model of public clouds enables broadcasters to adapt to changing needs in their operations. distribution) are perfect for the cloud towards a unicast personalized experience.cluded Brihan. However. The cloud could enable this by providing a ing the playback locally.” Smith concluded. Millennials consume most of their media and entertainment from an on-demand pull model. “The cloud can provide huge benefits to broadcasters looking to remain competitive in an increasingly more complex content management and delivery market. evening the playing field in many ways.” as no capital expenditures (CAPEX) is required and the setup and de—Steve Smith ployment is much faster. “Broadcasters used to say ‘if we don’t own or control it. vice president of marketing for Aspera.” conProducts like its StorNext line help improve the robustness and secu. By adding cloud services. said Alex Grossman. which is then downloaded locally and played off local hardware. “If a business does not work out they can just shut it down without “The hybrid model will help affect the transition over the next several years. Grass Valley’s Fletcher concurs.viders have the money and staff to create safer data facilities than any singular company could. and we are realizing the benefits of SaaS. can share the same level of service and security. according to Fletcher. vice president.

IT and cloud services represent both the capability and reason to trolled inputs. you need more video server capacity along with more general processing and switching gear. with con- multiplex. nature of broadcast operations. What many broadcasters don’t realize is that as they gradually move into an IT-based environment. no new Stan Moote equipment. social media. they are actually now running their own private cloud services which puts them in a position to interact with other remote cloud services in a seamless manner. a streaming service. or additional cable/satellite channel. approvals. playout. More than a decade ago. be it a dot two/three channel on your T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 5 . Continued on page 6 ´ to bring up another service. Tape-based activities have pretty much disappeared. your playout outputs. Here is the magic. and also handling tasks such as adding in closed captions. with only a tiny portion being custom SDI I/O modules. GOODBYE TO TAPE Take ingest and playout as an example. Files and streams can be moved directly from playout servers into cloud services for editing. These are typically consystem isn’t scalable. I believe this is due to the nature of the cloud itself. newswire. the cloud has to be the single most confusing. just a simple request for additional cloud capacity is all that will be required. IABM O ut of all the technologies broadcasters use. remote computing. and no new software licenses. especially after the 2011 Japanese tsunami caused sources of tape to suddenly become scarce. You will see how dependent you already are on cloud services for email. On the Internet. DRM. The magic has continued. graphics. slow-motion istic (meaning you can precisely handle live switching). search engines. These systems are essentially your own private clouds. stats info. install and test. The whole ingest-edit-playout analogy is now completely based on computer hardware. separate elements. Forscene provides a reason this isn’t acknowledged is due to the siloed virtualized process that can be integrated seamlessly with the broadcast workflow. each requiring their own media. and a way to leverage the Internet to save money. saving time and money and providing real scalability. To do this. this has positioned us into being cloud-capable. as the cloud has now become synonymous with offsite services. As our plants moved into the IT realm. outputs and clearly-defined functions and capabilities. and melts in an instant. Internet channels. CTO. This takes time to plan. and pretty much all aspects of web and social media. For example.BELIEVE IT OR NOT. private viewing. YOU ARE CLOUD-READY Integration with public cloud services is easier than ever By Stan Moote. collaborative sessions. live streams. order. break down these operational silos and operate more efficiently. The As an example of a cloud-based third-party production tool. no extra rack space. your station may suddenly decide sidered as single. all signal flow diagrams featured a cloud representing a type of remote transport mechanism that magically delivered content into and from our plants. BREAKING DOWN SILOS So what if you are not ready to jump straight into trusting a cloud service? Take a look around your operation. In a true cloud scenario. remote archives.the broadcast feed along with many other camera feeds. Sports is a perfect example. adding a new service or channel should be almost instantaneous and seamless. people can watch So what is the difference between your current playout cloud and cloud services? Besides the fact that your playout cloud is determin. processing. transcoding. ad sales and delivery. news services.

including having rights managerights are a fraction of those in broadcast. or moving 100% to cloud in the future. These streams and metadata can Stan Moote has worked worldwide in the broadcast industry for over be used directly by third-party production tools. integrated playout-in-the-cloud platform. vice president of engineering and development at Fox Networks Engineering and Operations. behind the live action. many sports rights holders now split the licensing for broadcast and streaming. THE END OF ‘BIG IRON’ Case in point: Disney/ABC Television Group is moving its broadcast playout. In the simplest sense. virtualized cloud processing. digital will see how dependent you already are on rights content producers have cloud services for email. network. needs and specialized instant access to create subclips archives. On the production side. search engines. On a larger scale.linkedin. and software-defined infrastructure. By cloud: Make sure the IT people pushing IT-based streams into Take a look around your operation. Fox Sports has gone one step further by deploying Game Creek Video’s “Encore” production mobile. editing. Disney/ABC personnel will be able to perform their functions using IP-connected desktop PCs. rather than working in traditional master control facilities. Once the clip three decades and has a clear understanding of technology combined is complete and the metadata has been edited or added. Taking general and highlights packages and DRM and pretty much all aspects of web broadcast courses like the ones broadcast these streams seconds and social media.” said Vince Roberts. IABM provides (www.A SOFTWARE-DEFINED FUTURE FOR BROADCAST? IP is revolutionizing the production process By James Careless B roadcasters are starting to embrace video over IP using software-defined networks. 1). playout and distribution/storage functions are now using specialized software running on servers and in the private/ public cloud. “Being able to spin new channels up and down using software ´Continued from page 5 distribution. traditional editing suites. Fox Networks’ Engineering & Operations is actively experimenting with SDNs. encodes them and business continuity. Facebook.900 IP-based video channels. CTO and EVP of Disney/ABC Television Group’s Global Operations. You in your organization are trained. Twitter. Windows Azure Media Service (WAMS) is a Platform as a Service testing the waters by using cloud services for disaster recovery and (PaaS) cloud offering that ingests media assets. The key to this operation is getting media into the cloud for live Realizing the potential income from digital content distribution. these broadcasters are moving away from dedicated. The entire process is virtualized and integrates seamThen there is the whole social media aspect of handling feeds for lessly with the broadcast workflow—which saves time and money and provides real scalability. n provides on-demand streaming. and using these streams as files and proxies for the rest digital rights content. including the seamless switching of uncompressed broadcast signals using SDNs and commercial-off-the-shelf Ethernet switches and servers. “We are looking to SDNs and IP in general to create flexibility in our broadcast plant. cloud-based distribution. 6 T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E . “By leveraging evolving IP and cloud technologies we are able to move beyond what’s currently possible with traditional proprietary ‘Big Iron’ broadcast infrastructures. an IP-enabled. requirements. the sequence with a solid business twist. (Fig. and signal routers. such as Forscene. without org). are ideal ways to assure the need for any additional hardyourself that you can take advantage of cloud services. they are taking the first steps towards making traditional master control rooms obsolete.” said Thomas Edwards. which is equipped with Evertz IP-enabled gateways and routers to carry and switch more than 6. You can see many of Stan’s articles and conis dropped back onto Azure for faster-than-real-time conform and tact him directly at ca. newswire. and countless others. and delivery infrastructure into the cloud using Imagine Communications’ VersioCloud. whether it be ware. remote and understand broadcast operations. so conventional broadcast ment tables predefined so there isn’t any worry about delivery conproduction workflows that require traditional broadcast equipment tent where it isn’t authorized. A final word about IT and the are not a viable solution. In doing so. budgets in digital of the activities on a remote basis. Entire production operations spanning the creation and management of broadcast-specific acquisition. broadcast-only proprietary hardware such as audio/video ad sales and delivery. making subclips or full highlights packages instantly.

broadcasters are likely to take their time moving to SDN-based production/playout. GV Convergent SDN is currently being tested by selected broadcasters according to Caron.” The trend towards SDNs specifically. COTS data centers. “This is vital. and they are scared of moving into SDN. virtualized production/ playout. because we’re going to have to be a more agile broadcaster in order to stay competitive in the future.” said Louis Caron. will allow us to field new services far quicker and much more inexpensively. “GV Convergent SDN provides a technology-agnostic operation paradigm requiring no additional training for the operators when migrating to an IP infrastructure. The co-founder of Omneon Video Networks recently launched the SDVI.” Grass Valley is also onboard the SDN train with the company’s GV Convergent SDN control system software. we’re forming strategic partnerships with them. an IP-focused SaaS company that provides and manages virtualized production applications for media clients. Cisco and HP. alongside traditional SDI-based equipment. rather than having to build or reconfigure physical master control production facilities.” he said. GV Convergent SDN product manager for the Montreal-based provider of broadcast and production technology.” n T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 7 . you are paying for capacity that isn’t making you money. and virtualized production in the cloud. systems architect for IP convergence at Imagine. “Think back 40 years. and we are providing the broadcast-specific software that run on these systems. VIRTUALLY SPEAKING Despite the introduction of SDN products by Grass Valley and Imagine Communications. because such functions can be done much less expensively using a virtualized broadcast facility.” said Fox’s Thomas Edwards. when broadcasters were still using 2-inch Quad tape and CRTs.” said John Mailhot. “The rest of the time. founder of Silicon Valley-based Media Systems Consulting. and software-defined infrastructure—are just starting to occur now. and software-defined infrastructure in general.” said Kovalick. with the tremendous potential of saving infrastructure cost.” he said. “The problem is that most broadcasters are comfortable with the industry-specific proprietary technology they are accustomed to. in part because this paradigm shift will have such an enormous impact.” Whatever the economics.” This possibility is not lost on Lawrence Kaplan. “Broadcasters see the value in moving from SDI to IP.” he said. “That’s why we’re not competing with of SDNs and software-defined infrastructure.on COTS hardware and the cloud. media consultant Al Kovalick believes that these vendors’ clients have yet to fully embrace the full potential broadcasters who cling to traditional forms of video production and playout are “wasting” millions of dollars. those suppliers. is readily acknowledged by equipment suppliers such as Dallas-based Imagine Communications. but the biggest changes—such as SDNs. “Broadcasting has changed radically since then. “because such 24/7 facilities tend to be at peak usage 25% of the time. and TV Technology’s cloud columnist. “They just don’t grasp how much is possible by moving to a true software-based production model—and how much money they can potentially save. at most. “We foresee the day when our broadcast customers are buying COTS data equipment from IT companies such as Arista. According to Kaplan (who serves as SDVI’s president/CEO). Grass Valley’s GV Convergent SDN control system transparently manages facility routing as the industry migrates from SDI to IP infrastructures. both on their premises and in the cloud. Those broadcasters who migrate to SDN by building in-house data centers could also be wasting money.

service costs from such a move SDI routers/switches. make a plan that translates these ideas into a process. This is one where equipment ghetto—where the and Operations. all the necessary functions are relatively small size of the marsoftware-based and content ket keeps per-function prices high. VP of Engineering and desktop/laptop-driven producfrom the broadcast/production Development at Fox Networks Engineering tion model. moving to IP-based production means moving IP switches/routers. they will literally be able to “do more with less. “IP-based video production” refers to providing ware and software. This The reduction in equipment/ include the VTRs/media servers.” rooms. and sourcing VP of Engineering and Development at Fox Networks Engineering staff from the world pool of IT/IP-trained engineers—rather than the and Operations. Broadcasters can also save money and increase flexibility by moving their master control functions from dedicated facilities to ‘virtualized facilities’. and distribution/storage functions they require are all the complete range of broadcast/production functions—acquisition. and separate editing automobiles to Henry Ford’s infrastructure … is a must for broadcasters. or a blend of both (the so-called hybrid solution).do broadcasters and video producers have to build old-style editing ing this option. In simple terms.STEP ONE – SCOPING THE PROJECT: tages of moving from dedicated. Taking their place is a mass production line. such a paradigm shift has to be done with careful planning and forethought. and shared like any other form of data across market—broadcasters and video producers can take advantage of less IP-connected workstations and networks. and distribution and storage—as software applicaon internal data centers. where all of the control. playout and switching is done in the cloud using standard IP-connected PC workstations. the impetus to move to IP-based production exists today. and/or private/public clouds. Using such commodity-priced services and ducers can enjoy all of the advantages of managing video just like any other form of data. man new physical playout facilities to support them.WHY IP MAKES SUCH A DIFFERENCE Fundamentally. and delivery infrastructure into the cloud for these very reasons. The Disney/ABC Television Group is moving its broadcast playout. “With this new approach. INTRODUCTION Broadcasters and video production houses are grasping the advan. without having to spend time to build specially dedicated physical facilities. playout. and is starting to integrate IP-based functionality into suites. network. vate/public cloud.” Fox is currently research. all of which tions operating on standard servers whether on premises. broadcasters such as Fox dwindling number of broadcast/video production-specific engineers. audio/vidis akin to going from hand-made “Moving to an IP-based software defined eo mixers. Clearly. That’s all there is to it.” said Thomas Edwards. No longer can spin up new channels as need be. and master controls. function-specific production hard. In this connected world.production-only equipment. as compared to the exponentially larger global IT equipment is stored. Typically all aggre- 8 T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E . accessed. The implications of such a transition are profound. configuring and deploying new program ware-controlled IT platforms—is a must for broadcasters who need offerings as software applications rather than having to build and to be agile and flexible to stay competitive. equipment rooms. to IP-based solutions where the acquisition. editing. and then considering what IPbased technological options exist to realize these goals. its network facilities. playout. playout. But given the millions (if not billions) of dollars at stake for broadcasters and video producers. By adopting this IP-based approach. in a priuse the same IP-connected commercial off-the-shelf priced servers. Next. these functions can be run editing. Begin by scoping the project’s goals. broadcasters and video proexpensive Commercial off the Shelf (COTS) IP/IT equipment in their day-to-day operations. Freed Thomas Edwards. and execute the plan.” “Moving to an IP-based software defined infrastructure—one ers and IP switches/routers rather than proprietary broadcast/video where all aspects of production are IP-connected and based on soft.SPONSORED CONTENT Presented by a Partner of Four Steps to Moving to IP-Based Video Production By James Careless Migrating to an IP-based production. software-based. and software defined storage employed by the away from the current model of dedicated-function broadcast/vidworld’s IT industry and its business customers. This includes using commodity-priced servequipment. eo production hardware. and distribution infrastructure is conceptually simple with this four-step approach.

or both) design. who will help (inment wherever they see fit. integrate. “IP can be a great way to boost your production facility’s capaci.disconnecting their on-site playout servers in favor of controlling remotely-located. In this new “It can also help you grow your business by providing extra capacity model. cast/production plant would benefit by moving to IP.” said Ohanian. A case in point: Game Creek Video’s new “Encore” production can now turn to major IT equipment/applications companies like truck. Media Segment Strategist at Cisco Systems. and for what reasons. broadcasters and producment that allows Encore to handle up to 23 terabytes (Tbps) of data. further to. and support they need to migrate Gigabit Ethernet infrastructure and compact IP signal routing equip.their facilities to the IP world. Better yet. This leads us to the next step: Deciding what IP-based equipment to use and in which areas of broadare acquisition. The decision to update either part or all of a broadcast/video production plant to IP is influenced by the specific needs and budget of a given company. they can locate each ele. and content storage. questions need to be asked. minimalist cabling allowed by moving to IP and its virtual switching capabilities. there STEP TWO – WEIGHING TECHNOLOGICAL OPTIONS The move to IP-based process brings broadcasters and video promay be good economic reasons to upgrade an area to IP such as getducers alike into the data center mainstream. in other locations. which it built for Fox Sports. and distribution/storage. is running. consider what aspects of the broad. This is why Disney/ABC is moving its global linear playout facilirouting equipment in the same limited space. co and software provided by Imagine Communications. Disney/ABC could close these control rooms and operate their T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 9 . includes an uncompressed 10 Cisco for the systems.” said Tom Ohanian. to the project” begins. areas of the broadcast/production plant would benefit from a migration to IPbased equipment. Besides the need to replace aging legacy equipment. and within a small physical space. To scope the project properly. using IP switches and other technology from Cisties economically.900 uncompressed HD-SDI working with global companies. external suppliers. Disney/ABC’s master controls in Burbank and New York are and flexibility to do more.casting/production. and also positions your plant for the inevitable full migration to IP-based video production that is coming. and cost-effectiveness of moving to IP today.One thing is certain: The chances of success are improved by bringing ed-function production equipment allowing them to do their work in qualified experts during the scoping process to ensure that the best with the freedom and cost-efficiencies of any other IP-connected data-centric business. and how can it be tested while the existing legacy system and playout on servers located in the same place. such as spin up new channels on a soft. Where will the funding come for this Instead. by moving to an IP-based model. access. In a general sense. such that there will be no gaps when the new IP system is brought online? or in the cloud.upgrade? What will the timeline be for execution.ties into the cloud. bolstered by specialized software devideo signals far more than could be achieved with legacy non-IP veloped by broadcast-centric providers. (If they wanted ware-controlled basis. playout.SPONSORED CONTENT gated in the same location for ease of connection and maintenance. A practical rule of thumb is to consider a initial move into IP in areas of the operation where legacy equipment is due for replacement. “Moving to IP in such areas first gives your engineers a chance to get their feet wet in IP/IT. This means that they ting more performance out of limited physical space.” Once potential areas for IP upgrade have been selected. cloud-stored-and-served video feeds. The bottom line: Moving to IP-based production frees broadcasters and video producers from the straitjacket of old-style dedicat. “At the same time. editing and Master Control functions on house staff. The answers to these questions will vary from project to project. services. efficiencies. editing. the areas that can be upgraded equipment and design are adopted.” Figure 1: (Caption for photo showing wiring before and after): One of the benefits of this transformation is the This is where the process of “scoping move away from cable-intensive point-to-point signal management in traditional Master Control rooms. tion houses can now enjoy the economies of scale that accompany That is enough capacity to move up to 6. the upgrade. by deciding which the clean. and deploy standard PC workstations in their offices. your production process will benefit from the connectivity.

An IP-based playout facility has no such limits. it is time to make the plan to turn these ideas into reality. the plan should work out every step of the IP-based project a time-centered. hiring expensive video landlines. knowledgeable IP-centric companies have the know how and resources to help broadcasters and video producers move into the IP age. Acquisition: Legacy video cameras are islands whose outputs have to be manually incorporated into the broadcast plant or recorded to removable media that then has to be manually connected to the broadcast plant. which is why NBC Sports saved millions of dollars by dropping dedicated video lines in favor of IP streams during the 2012 Sochi Olympics. VS • Can be housed in multiple locations. dedicated media servers. This is also the time to decide whether such a plan would work better in a new facility—one with new IP cable runs. and mixing. Allowances must be made for backup facilities to take over when primary facilities must be taken offline for construction—say if the data servers are being installed in a former Master Control equipment room—and continuation of service must be assured at all times. • IP-based technology can improve operations in all areas of broadcasting and video production. only replaced. in the cloud. • Uses less-expensive OTS computer technology that is easily expanded and upgraded. As for storage? The best legacy systems use monstrous tape/DVD sorting robots. 10 T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E . Editing: A traditional editing suite is a function-specific space requiring all kinds of dedicated machines for managing video. step-by-step schedule. due to short cable runs and need to service equipment directly. • Is difficult to repurpose old facilities and equipment as the market changes. • Is software-driven and not labor-intensive. preferably with redundancy if possible. • Requires substantial money and time to launch new program production and playout facilities. Plug an IP-based camera into an IP network. checks must be made with suppliers and integrators before work begins to ensure that they can and will commit to the time Legacy versus IP-Based TV Legacy TV Production: IP. The video files can be in one location. and suppliers have been chosen. audio. As well. Need more playout capacity? Simply load and manage the new files into a private/public cloud from a desktop PC. and connected by LANs and private/public Internet.Based TV Production: • Uses dedicated purpose. or a mix of both. video files can be kept on-site in data servers. • Is labor-intensive. Clearly. IP-based distribution is far simpler and cheaper. integrators. it makes economic sense to keep these locations in use. But since the master controls already exist. The day of the video sorting robot and jammed video closet are over. and the control systems located in another. or similarly expensive satellite uplinks. and presto: The network sees it instantly and can make its system controls and output available to authorized personnel anywhere in the world. and located on less expensive real estate—or in the broadcaster/production house’s existing facility. more machines have to be added. • Can be repurposed again and again to keep up with an evolving market. Distribution and Storage: Distributing video through legacy means dubbing and sending out DVDs/tapes. STEP THREE – DEVELOPING THE PLAN Once the project has been scoped and the equipment designers. If more playout capacity is required. all connected by IP networking. and moving to IP allows their technicians to handle more channels in future without being expanded. the worst simply put such materials in a closet. or both. An IP-based editing suite is software-based. proprietary technology that cannot be easily expanded and updated. and serves many function. “One great thing about moving to IP is that you can disperse your data center functions across various locations and into the cloud as well. Its controls can be called up and used on any appropriate workstation on the facility’s network. With IP.” said Tom Ohanian. no new machines needed.SPONSORED CONTENT channels from anywhere. Playout: Legacy playout means video tape players. • Can easily be re-programmed to launch new production and playout services without new investment or major time expenditures. “No longer are you forced to try to fit all of your machines into the same physical space!” Whether for a partial or total rebuild. This includes working with broadcasters and video producers to plan the process carefully and accurately. requiring function-specific spaces. • Has to be housed in one location.

the money to pay fort the plan must be budgeted and a tracking process put in place to ensure that the project’s progress and expenditures are monitored at all times.S. If you’ve ever seen live professional on time.” said robust.EXECUTE THE PLAN and easy to expand/upgrade thanks to being Cisco as a key partner early. series-solid-state-system/index.port of knowledgeable IT data partners. Cisco’s Nexus data center closely with this company and its suppliers are vital during the first three steps of the switches fit this bill: to devise and then execute their plan. home of their Transmission Operations Center. Bring abled data center-based service that lets MLB serve out 10 million baseball video streams daily to Web-connected ture based on Cisco’s IP routers / Switches The first step is in creating such a polias well as Cisco UCS system. stored. Cisco’s business in the past 12 years. and programupgrades for broadcasters and produclines and The entire system is managed by MLBAM’s Chelsea Market headquarters in New James Careless is an award-winning broadcast/IT journalist with credits York City. StreamingMedia. fast and reliable: Major League Baseball commissioner Bud www. the Huffington Post. Advanced Media (MLBAM) is the IP-enWhen it comes time to execute your plan. smartphone. brought in STEP FOUR . whether Sports. six data centers. with the active suptogether virtualization. and Sports Illustrated’s 120 The time to start moving to an IP-based infrastructure. cost-effective. Cisco UCS brings plished in a thoughtful. Cisco’s UCS Invicta products answer tion houses. which needs to be done Finally. from scoping the www. they need to be accomas well as Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS). network access. MovThe key: Make the right choices this requirement: ing into IP successfully requires partners throughout the process. MLB’s MLBAM succeeded because they The next critical step is to create fast. Given that such IP upgrades involve the very core of these U. addressable. while MLBAM’s 10 million daily streams Cisco offers a range of media industry IT/ are among the Web’s largest such traffic. Cisco Media Industry IP Solutions T H E M E D I A I N D U S T RY T R A N S I T I O N T O I P : M A K I N G T H E T E C H N O L O G Y C A S E 11 . n ing power into a centralized architecture for data centers.html co played a key role in keeping the MLBAM portant during this final stage of translating project on time and on budget.html by substantial intellectual and equipment A case in point: Major League Baseball resources. and served by MLBAM’s houses. and comput. WWE wrestling. don’t do it alone.SPONSORED CONTENT schedule within the data-center-switches/index. PCWorld. stateless. and worked Knowledgeable experts and suppliers software-defined. but project to executing the plan. Add in extra time and money to allow for delays and overages—because these happen—and the plan should be ready to go. well-planned manner. Any impacts on the broadcaster/production house’s own departments must also be assessed and dealt with in advance. mable storage that supports fast. and scalable networks that are also reliable scoped the project carefully. the same logic follows. IP solutions for broadcasters and media This kind of performance. CisIP-transition process. but one of the UCS server family can provide this capability through a selection of servers that are great stories in American Selig. Finally. The company also serves up video for CONCLUSION clients such as who not only know this technology. on a partial or total basis. multi-user storage. the plan into action. broadcasters and media companies When it comes to executing IP-based in strict accordance to its scheduled timeneed scalable. They are critically imwww. and the right servers-unified-computing/ucs-invictahave a proven track record underpinned results will follow. in an IP technology partner who can archive the IP upgrade on budget. which are powered by Cisco’s IP Infrastructure companies’ money-making infrastructures. dense. Results speak for themselves: MLBAM’s “At Bat” mobile app is and TV has arrived for broadcasters and production All of this content is managed. storage access. which is built companies wanting to implement their own upon Cisco’s Media Data Center ArchitecMedia Data Centers. and tablet-using subscribers. at Business Week. and as specified. is “not only cy-driven Infrastructure is to implement a one of the great stories in American sports scalable. chances are that you are watching MLBAM-delivered content. computing layer. baseball streaming on the Web. the highest grossing sports app in