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Virtualization Meets Video Processing at NAB 2014

If anything is certain about the video business, it’s this: the volume of change is daunting and every change tends to make life more complicated, not less.

This is certainly true at the sharp end of the business -- digital video processing – where  “multiscreen” video, new video formats and new video technologies are together creating a perfect storm of complexity. Once there was SD over MPEG2 delivered to TVs. Now there is SD, various flavors of HD and, soon, 4K; and MPEG2, AVC and now HEVC; plus a wealth of encapsulation schemes and DRMs; And even more screen sizes and resolutions as the number of device to be supported grows ever larger.

The number of permutations of all these options is truly dizzying. Every permutation is a potential video “workflow” to be implemented – and the number of permutations is expanding rapidly, apparently endlessly and it’s exponential. Today Cisco deals with some media companies that have over 80 video workflows for their content. One more video format – for instance 4K – and this potentially doubles to 160. Another compression scheme – HEVC perhaps -- and now we have 320. And so on.

Keeping track of all these “workflows” is one thing, but Read More »

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The 4K / HEVC Video Roadmap: Follow Cisco’s at CES 2014

Ken Morse1207_-138By Ken Morse, CTO, Connected Devices Business Unit, Cisco

One of the trending topics here at CES in Las Vegas this week, without question, is 4K video/ 4K television, and its consumer-facing brand, “UltraHD.”

Like HD did, 4K redefines TV and this is what CES is all about – compelling new technologies that ultimately draw dollars from consumer wallets.  This year, examples of 4K video will be everywhere (including in our demo suites at The Wynn Hotel…)

But there’s another angle, outside of the visual wow that comes with 4K’s pixel doubling, faster frame rates, deeper blacks, and brighter whites. And it’s all about the shape our industry is going to take. 4K is a disruptor and when there is a disruption, there are winners and losers and speed counts.

For instance: Read More »

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