Cable Technology Feature Article
Ericsson Launches Unified Video Encoding to Simplify TV Everywhere
By Tara Seals, TMCnet Contributor
Ericsson (News - Alert) has predicted that there will be 50 billion connected devices by 2020, 15 billion of which will be video-enabled. The proliferation of these devices, combined with consumer willingness to pay for high quality, premium content, is resulting in a new age of anywhere, anytime access to content. In the U.S. it’s called TV Everywhere; in Europe it’s known as TV Anywhere. But operators are facing challenges when it comes to being able to deliver on the promise.
For one, TV service providers face an ever-growing level of infrastructure complexity in order to deliver high quality video anywhere, anytime and to any device, faster than their existing and new competitors. So they’ve had to make choices between balancing investment, architecture and video compression performance with their multi-screen video processing deployments. This has been especially true as service providers look to address both linear and live TV services and the rapid growth of on-demand services.
Ericsson is trying to tackle the issue with the launch of Ericsson Virtualized Encoding, a unified software solution designed for intelligently allocating resources and simplifying the process of selecting the right encoding method and platform based on the operator's priorities for deployment speed, video quality and output.
"Ericsson's new virtualized encoding solution provides an answer for customers who increasingly need to prepare content in more formats for more screens than ever before,” said Michelle Abrahams, senior analyst at research firm SNL Kagan MRG. “It will allow them to choose their encoding infrastructure based on factors important to them such as performance, density, and time to market."
Image via Shutterstock
The product is part of Ericsson's Video Processing range. It supports all input-types (compressed off-air or mezzanine and uncompressed), all output-types (traditional linear broadcast on cable, IPTV (News - Alert), DTH satellite and DTT, Multiscreen ABR delivery over IP) and all codecs (MPEG-2, MPEG-4 AVC and HEVC). It can also be implemented on processing platforms containing a combination of dedicated programmable hardware such as Ericsson's video processing chip, in customer premises and software or GPU-based servers on premise, or potentially deployed in the cloud.
"In today's TV Anywhere world there is no 'one-size fits all' solution to video processing and a variety of compression platforms are being used to balance investment, architecture and performance,” said Giles Wilson, head of TV compression at Ericsson. “With the launch of Ericsson Virtualized Encoding we are unifying all these processing platforms under one intelligent software abstraction layer to ensure best-in-class performance, simplification of processes, reduced operational burden and far greater agility in deploying services. Our customers are especially welcoming our approach in removing the burden of deploying HEVC compression, and the inevitable platform upgrades as performance demands increase rapidly."
Edited by Stefania Viscusi