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Cisco’s Virtualized, Software-Only 4K Encoding Solution: The Secret Ingredient Winning in Customer “Bake-offs” Around the World

If there’s one common element across the major television/video trade shows this year — the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the upcoming National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show, and likely those that follow, it’s the focus on “the rest of the ecosystem,” as it relates to 4K, Ultra High-Definition (UHD) TV. Meaning, the televisions are out there. Everything else is still catching up.

With NAB coming up, and video picture quality a hot topic, I wanted to highlight what’s been going on with Cisco’s 4K encoder work, as evidenced by customer wins — some of which we can discuss, some of which we can’t — in a series of recent “encoder bake-offs” around the world.

One that we can discuss is our work with India’s Videocon d2h, Read More »

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The Future of Media: Four Key Drivers Altering an Industry

Until recently, the global media industry had been relatively stable, with a robust value chain and well-defined business models.

Today, multiple factors are tearing at the fabric of those finely tuned business models: new players such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Apple offer consumers new ways of accessing professional video content; technology standards are in flux; and regulatory and macroeconomic factors undermine consumer and investor confidence.

Last week, more than 90,000 media and entertainment officials from 150 countries descended on Las Vegas for NAB Show, the annual National Association of Broadcasters conference. I attended to share some of predictions for the industry that we have developed in the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG). In particular, I spoke at a breakfast briefing for CxO-level executives about the impactful yet uncertain effects of four key drivers—consumer behavior, regulatory changes, technology, and macroeconomics—in an effort to better define their media-industry disruptions: Read More »

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See it at NAB: Cisco & Fox Running Live, Uncompressed Video – Over Ethernet

It’s early April, which means it’s time to trek back to Las Vegas for the annual National Association of Broadcasters show (Booth A113, North Hall.) It’s a busy NAB for us this year, for lots of reasons – starting with the (way cool!) proof of concept demonstration we’re doing with Fox, to run live, uncompressed video over Ethernet.

That’s right: Video over Ethernet. Read More »

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Wondering What Content Networks Will Look Like in the Future? Cisco at NAB 2013

If you’re wondering what’s been facing video content creators like Fox and TV Globo, and how they view their future in these madcap days of TV everywhere, you’ll want to find a seat at the Las Vegas Convention Center room S222 at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 9. That’s where a panel of experts on the matter is scheduled, featuring Fox and TV Globo, on the content creation side, and Verizon, for the distribution point of view.

It’s all part of an NAB Super Session that we’re glad to be sponsoring, titled “What Will the Content Network of the Future Look Like?” Read More »

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My $0.02 on This Year’s NAB Show in Vegas

We’ve all now returned from the stardust of the annual National Association of Broadcasters convention in Las Vegas last week, which seems a useful time to reflect briefly on the major threads of the show. It was a great one for us, and I’m pleased and grateful to report the following, in no particular order:

1.     Broadcasters and program networks are getting fired up about the IP transition, like the rest of us, and not a moment too soon. We fielded tons of questions about the cost savings associated with CDNs (Content Delivery Networks), IP distribution over terrestrial fiber networks–the proliferation of IP-based, video-capable screens, and cloud–how to get new services to market more quickly and how to streamline workflows. Transcoding engines, contribution networks, and all of the tacit and explicit benefits of the overall IP migration were all hot topics.

Of course, we, as Cisco people, can talk about IP all day long. And so we did: One of the Cisco booth demos highlighted Read More »

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