Standing in the 21st century the contributions of cloud technology are undeniable. The broadcast industry is no longer awaiting a technological revolution that can transform the workflow or reduce the costs of operations. The cloud has made that transformation possible for broadcasting companies. It has enabled the companies to distribute their content to the customers directly.
Any major broadcaster can now reach their target viewers directly irrespective of their geographic location. All of them now rely on off-the-shelf computing software, hardware and integrate them with the cloud for seamless and accurate distribution of the media.
The Cloud based TV broadcasting can come in multiple infrastructures and pricing models. The most popular forms of cloud tech include private, public and hybrid. Most businesses rely on cloud services for using computing, storage, and bandwidth on demand. All cloud products provide immense scalability. Here’s a bird’s eye view of each model –
- The private cloud – this one is the most secure of them all. Several businesses now rely on personal cloud services to store their operational information. Integrating the cloud technology with Software as a Service (SaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) gives these brands the unique advantage of leveraging the latest technology without investing in new hardware every year.
- The public cloud – it might be the most pocket-friendly of all cloud solution options, but it is not the most secure option among all three. These public clouds work as utility services. Therefore, when a company works with a public cloud service, they pay for exactly the services they use.
- Hybrid cloud – this platform has the best of both public and private cloud techs. The business functions are divided among the infrastructures depending on the need of the customers. It uses on-premise elements in combination with third-party servers to deliver uninterrupted services to the customers.
Broadcasting has always been about the content and the viewers. Without great content quality, there is no viewer satisfaction. The workflow is greatly influenced by the quality of the content. Therefore, picking the appropriate cloud architecture is imperative for the proper management and transmission of the content.
What functional advantages does the cloud bring to broadcasters?
The availability of multiple pricing models and the different cloud technologies has enabled the broadcasters to explore new avenues of broadcasting. They not only provide stronger security, but they also offer immense flexibility for the accomplishment of different business processes. There are five key functions of the new technology that immediately benefits of Cloud-based TV broadcasting –
Content workflow from creator to the broadcaster
Usually, the broadcaster location sources the high-resolution content from several locations. The production task requires an integrated media sharing and communications system. The content creators and broadcasters can connect via the cloud storage platform securely via multi-step authentication.
The broadcasters can collect fresh, high resolution and good quality content from all over the world. At the same time, the content creators can access several versions of it for quick edit and feedback. Upon the completion of creation and edits, the creator pushes it to a secure cloud. The content travels from that cloud to any or all broadcaster facilities around the globe.
Management of post-production operations
The post-production has always been a part of the large-scale content transfer operations. It involves the transfer and management of huge volumes of data. Several post-production locations are usually involved and this content often goes back to the central broadcasting location for review. The relevant process is often inflexible and extensive.
Multiple companies are reinventing the workflow. They use hybrid clouds for storing the master content. They store the key source files on on-site servers. The low-resolution versions are the ones sent for post-production edits, while the master content resides in safety. The use of private or hybrid clouds increases the agility of the entire process and improves the speed.
The distribution of content to different platforms
The use of satellites for the delivery of linear content to vast geographic areas has always been prohibitively expensive. That is one of the reasons the broadcast media took decades to evolve and learn all about marketing. With the rapid expansion of TV networks across the globe, the requirement for the creation of divergent linear fields became more apparent than ever. It was not always possible to deliver them via satellites.
The solution was to use the cloud as the main repository for the master content. Combining with the SaaS and IaaS platforms has enabled the broadcasters to convey the content to the edge servers. The state-of-the-art tech enables the edge servers to receive the media content through the internet. These servers are controlled by a cloud infrastructure.
New distribution models
The broadcasters can now rely on direct-to-customer distribution models. Almost all the homes have internet connectivity. Whether it is through an all-home router system or mobile data, everyone can now go online with a click of a button.
That has enabled the TV broadcasters to reach their target viewers via Over-the-Top (OTT) infrastructures. When they store the content in the cloud, they can deliver it directly to the users using an OTT platform. The devices include mobiles, tablets, laptops, desktops, and smart TVs. It has reduced the cost of installation of proprietary end-user devices and it has expanded the reach of individual broadcasters.
Overall cost reduction
While discussing cloud technology in the realm of TV broadcasting, there is no way you can ignore the reduction in the cost of operations. The cloud-based solutions have drastically lessened the cost of operating TV networks, sourcing and storing content and broadcasting media.
The presence of cloud services provides scalability to all users. The introduction of OTT has ensured that viewers with cheaper data packs and pocket-friendly viewing platforms get stellar user experience with little expense. It has reduced the cost of operations on both ends – the broadcasters and the viewers.
Right now, there is no way to deny the rise of the cloud. You might love it or hate it, but you cannot ignore it. It is here to make broadcasting smoother than it was ever before. This turn of the century will bring forth hundreds of new TV networks, who are willing to make a change through quality content, by embracing new-age technologies.