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Video Infrastructure Focus at Streaming Forum 2013

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Streaming Forum 2013, the new cutting-edge event by the team behind Streaming Media Europe, will focus on the streaming media game-changers that will continue to drive our industry to new heights in the coming years, with a special emphasis on key hot spots. Here we take a closer look at the Video Infrastructure track

Behind every great piece of content that a viewer watches, there are myriad infrastructure decisions. The Video Infrastructure track at Streaming Forum offers nine sessions that explore everything from streaming servers to CDN options, all with the same goal in mind: managing and delivering the bits and bytes seamlessly to viewers while paying attention to quality of service and efficiency for the rightsholders and content publishers.

  • Case Study: HBO Europe – A Broadcaster’s Guide to the TV Everywhere Universe
  • Case Study: How The BBC Ensured Live Streaming Resilience For The Olympics
  • Practicalities of Putting Captions on IP-Delivered Video Content
  • The Future of CDNs
  • Enhancing the Second Screen Experience with Multiscreen Streaming
  • Media Server Application Trends
  • Integrating TV Everywhere Services
  • HEVC and OTT: Challenges and Perspectives
  • Multiscreen Services for Live Sport

Read more about the Video Infrastructure Track here

 

Bird imageAbout Streaming Forum 2013

A new, cutting edge Conference for innovators, practitioners and decision makers (18-19 June in London)

      •  30 panel sessions, how-to sessions and presentations in 3 tracks
      • Case studies and success stories from Bayer Benelux, BBC, Channel 4, Google, HBO Europe, London Olympics, Major League Baseball, Manchester City FC, NHS, Royal College of Surgeons, Topshop, UBS and more
      • Sponsor Showcase, Party, Networking, and Streaming Media’s European Readers’ Choice Awards!

Read more about Streaming  Forum here 

Register here

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Meet our Streaming Forum Speaker: Jason Thibeault

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Jason Thibeault, Sr. Director, Marketing Strategy, Limelight Networks, USA

Jason Thibeault, Senior Director, Marketing Strategy at Limelight Networks will be presenting the keynote session on Wednesday 19 June (9-10am), The Power of Storyshowing. He will also appear on a panel session, The Future of CDNs, half an hour later on the same day. Here he tells us a little bit about himself and what he will be talking about.

 

Tell us a little about you, your background and your current role.

I am currently the Sr. Director, Marketing Strategy at Limelight Networks and responsible for much of the way Limelight is positioned in the market.

What will you be talking about at Streaming Forum? Why have you chosen this subject?

Although a deep technologist at heart, I am also a storyteller. Schooled as a professional writer my love is storytelling. The great thing about the digital world is that it transforms storytelling. They aren’t just words anymore (or just video). Magical combinations of mediums can come together to create vibrant and interactive experiences. When you bring that to the business world you realize that everyone, even organizations, are trying to tell a story and it’s how we engage with each other. This really is where I spend my time.

In my keynote, The Power of Storyshowing, you’ll learn the 9 killer things you need to tell awesome stories with video. You’ll see examples of business stories that make us cry, make us laugh, and make us want to take action. You’ll leave with one key message burning in your mind: “I have to go tell my story.”

I will also be sitting on a panel talking about The Future of the CDNs. The CDN is really fascinating. As a market and a service it’s changing. It’s evolving because we are all realizing that delivery is just one component of getting that story to our audiences. I am fascinated by this evolution of CDNs from just dumb pipes to intelligent networks that can help organizations tailor content delivery into contextually-relevant experiences for their audience. That’s powerful.

Name some key challenges faced by your clients, and tell us how you are overcoming them?

Our clients are struggling with digital marketing, with engaging with their audiences, with their digital presence. Many of the systems they use to manage and publish websites, to manage and publish videos, to store objects, to deliver them, are all disconnected. That makes it really hard to tell a consistent story across all devices anywhere in the world so that they can maximize engagement (which is what they want as engagement leads to intimacy leads to conversion). We help them wipe away some of that complexity (let’s be honest, we aren’t a silver bullet for a problem this big) by making it easier to create, manage, and deliver an awesome digital presence through a single, cloud-based platform of integrated tools for their website, video, storage, delivery/performance, and analytics.

What do you see as major trends in streaming media?  

I see streaming media getting more personalized and more interactive. Obviously video is going to dominate content over the next five years. The data trajectory is incredible. But, just as websites transformed to dynamic, contextual experiences, so too will video. It can’t be just dumb. Discovery has to be smarter, it has to be linked to who I am, what I like, where I’ve been. This will require a lot of real-time data from both the player and the evolution of the CDN but the cloud resources are there now (i.e., Hadoop clusters and elastic computing) to acquire and process it. It’s just a matter of time before the content owners and the technologists begin to integrate that into the video experiences they have been building.

What’s the do you enjoy the most about your job in this industry?

Working with amazing clients, companies that are trying to reshape the way we tell, interact, and experience stories. Whether it’s stories about their company, or stories from the big screen, or stories about their customers, these organizations are transforming the web with their digital content and I get to be at the center of it all as part of Limelight.

 

Jason’s keynote, The Power of Storyshowing, takes place on Wednesday 19 June, 9.00-10.00.

 

The panel session, The Future of CDNs, is on Wednesday 19 June, 10.30 – 11.30.

The panel consists of:

Moderator: Dom Robinson, Co-Founder, Director. id3as & Contributing Editor, StreamingMedia.com, id3as, UK

Panellists: Jason Thibeault, Sr. Director, Marketing Strategy, Limelight Networks, USA, Stef van der Ziel, CEO, Jet-Stream, The Netherlands, Miles McWilliams, Head of Global Sales – IP Transit & CDN, Deutsche Telekom, UK, Mike Smith, Solutions Engineer, Edge Comuting & CDN Services, Mirror Image Internet, UK, and James Fletcher, Marketing Director, CDN.net,UK.

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The European CDN Market: Video

The European CDN market is quite different from the US CDN market, with more of an emphasis on Quality of Service than on pricing. This panel discussion from Streaming Media Europe 2010 breaks down the European market by the numbers and examines cultural, market and technological differences among the various regions within Europe. Finally, panellists discuss the varying services – CDNs, hosting providers and streaming providers – and how they fit into these regional differences.

Moderator: Stef van der Ziel, CEO, Jet-Stream
Roberto Bisconcini, CEO, WeStream
Nicolas Gaviola, Business Development Manager, Flumotion
Eric Matsgård, CEO, Qbrick
Dominic Monkhouse, Managing Director, PEER 1 Hosting
Chris Townsley, Director of European Sales, EMEA, Limelight Networks UK Ltd



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Announcing the Content Delivery Summit at Streaming Media Europe

One of the key differences between the online video industry in the U.S. and Europe lies in the different approaches to content delivery, which Nigel Regan outlined in depth in The State of the European Content Delivery Market last autumn. Because these differences are so pronounced, we’ve added a new one-day event at Streaming Media Europe called the Content Delivery Summit, a one-day conference will bring together content owners, infrastructure providers, and the financial community to discuss the business and technology of delivering video online.

Watch this space for more information about the event, but if you’ve got an idea for a panel session topic, the call for speakers is now open, and we look forward to seeing your submissions.

In the meantime, here’s video from a Streaming Media Europe 2009 session called “Will The Cloud Rain On The CDNs’ Parade,” which examines the state of the content delivery market in Europe, particularly as it relates to cloud services such as Amazon’s CloudFront.

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TeliaSonera To Enter CDN Market

Streaming Media’s Dan Rayburn reports the following on his Business of Video blog:

With all the carriers and telcos entering the CDN space of late, it’s no surprise that European carrier TeliaSonera plans to enter the CDN market and will probably make the announcement at the MIPTV show in Cannes next month.

teliasonera1TeliaSonera is the number one carrier of IP traffic in Europe and their website says they provide direct connections to their network for more than 80% of all European broadband service providers. They basically own the vast majority of eyeballs in Europe. Currently, many of the CDNs who have delivery services in Europe buy from TeliaSonera and it appears as if they now want to cut out the CDNs and take that business on themselves.

I’m also hearing that they plan to offer a video content management service across their network and plan to make an acquisition in the market to add this functionality to their offering, although I don’t know who they plan to acquire or how close a deal may be.

TeliaSonera will need to do a lot more than just be able to deliver bits if they want to truly enter the CDN market and if they do plan to add some applications to the network to help manage video assets, it’s a similar approach that Level 3 is taking in the United States. The CDN market is going to look very different 24 months from now and while it will take many years for the shift to take place, we’re already starting to see a lot of the carriers and telcos lay the ground work for what it to come.

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Video CDN Pricing Stable in Q4

Streaming Media executive VP Dan Rayburn writes on his Business of Video blog:

I’ve just completed my review of all the contracts and RFPs I saw in the market for the fourth quarter of 2008 and overall, pricing from the major content delivery networks for video delivery was pretty stable without much decline in pricing from the third quarter. (note: you can easily find my latest pricing post at www.cdnpricing.com)

Looking at pricing year over year, it looks like CDN pricing for video on a per GB delivered model fell between 30-35% from 2007 to 2008. While many of the contracts from the fourth quarter was for new business in the market and not contract renewals, those with renewing contracts saw on average about a 50% decline in pricing from a year or more ago. While that might make some think pricing fell in half year over year, remember that many of these contracts are 12 and 24 months in length and also included a lot more traffic over a twelve month period. Additionally, we saw many content owners increase their video bitrates from 300Kbps in 2007 to 500-750Kbps in 2008. In many cases this increased the number of bits they pushed by two or three times without any additional growth in traffic year over year.

The other trend from the fourth quarter is that many of the major CDNs are giving volume discounts on lower tiers. In the past, customers had to be doing hundreds of TBs per month to see major discounts, but in the fourth quarter, many CDNs were dropping the volume tier to lower levels. Those doing around 250TB a month are getting better volume pricing.

While many want to say that some CDN vendors are only competing on price or are giving the business away, this is not the case with the major providers. I have seen multiple instances where Limelight and Level 3 have passed on business because the customer wanted pricing that was too low. Yes, pricing is a factor but it is not the only factor for customers when signing contracts. For the quarter, the lowest pricing I saw in the market was still from newcomer BitGravity and the highest pricing was still from Akamai.

While some are speculating that Akamai is now starting to cut pricing for commoditized video delivery, I don’t see that being the case across the board. In many cases they are offering lower pricing than before, but their bottom price that I saw was still about 20-25% more than what Limelight, Level 3 and CDNetworks are charging for completely commoditized video delivery business. You can read more on Akamai’s recent pricing trends from my post last month entitled “Akamai Getting More Aggressive On CDN Pricing, But More Steps Are Needed.”

For 2009, I don’t expect to see a big decline in pricing. Even with the lower pricing that we are seeing from folks like Cogent and others, the CDNs all know that they can’t give this stuff away. The content delivery business is all about the economics of scale. CDNs have to multiply the volume of traffic on their network many times over before the next round of major pricing discounts can take place. I think it will at least a year in the market before we see that happen. So while pricing always goes down based on customers doing more volume, I don’t expect a big drop at all this year.

In my previous pricing posts, I was including pricing averages from roughly 15 different CDNs. I’ve quickly realized that this causes the average price to fluctuate greatly based on one provider being very high or very low in the market and skews the numbers. The pricing also changes drastically based on the volume of bandwidth that one is committing to, which I have also varied over previous post based on deals I’m seeing in the market.

Starting with this post, I am only going to use the pricing I see from the 4-5 major CDNs in the market to come up with the average price per GB delivered. Moving forward, I’m also going to keep the GB volume the same each quarter so that it is easier and more accurate to compare pricing from one quarter to another. This is not an exact science but keeping the data points consistent from one quarter to another will help everyone be able to better compare pricing over the course of the year.

For content owners, please keep in mind that the below pricing is not necessarily what you should pay. Many factors can and should affect the pricing and the averages I published are for large volume commoditized video delivery contracts.

The average contract length I am seeing for video only delivery is still 12 months. For contracts that include more than just video delivery, things like small object delivery, static caching etc. contract lengths average close to 24 months.

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Jet Stream Named Readers’ Choice Award Winner

One of the highlights of Streaming Media Europe was presenting the first-ever Readers’ Choice Award for Regional (European) Content Delivery Network. The finalists were Global-MIX and Stream UK, both from the UK, and Jet Stream from the Netherlands. Showing the truly pan-European nature of the show, Jet Stream was the winner for its Streamzilla content delivery service. Congrats to Stef van der Ziel and everyone else at Jet Stream.

Next year, we’ll be presenting an entire awards program specifically focusing on the European market. Watch this space and the Streaming Media Global site for details to come!

 

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