In Broadcast - October 2013 - 48


I N T E R N A T I O N A L

WWW.INBROADCAST.COM | ISSUE 24 - OCTOBER 2013

N E W S

InFILE

The Inexorable Rise Of IPTV & Streaming
Moving rapidly beyond simple downloading, IPTV has seen a boom in streaming services as the
connected device becomes the screen of choice...

By Kevin Hilton
Contributing Editor

T

48

echnology can sometimes be
out of synch with itself. Twenty
years ago TV sets with computer
capability were conceived as
the next step forward in home
entertainment.
They combined traditional
broadcast programming with
PC functionality and internet
connectivity. In 1994 ABC’s World
New Now became the first television
programme transmitted over the
internet; the following year the term
Internet Protocol TV was coined
when Precept Software launched
the IP/TV single and multicast videoaudio application.
The idea of the connected TV
faded into the background as the
90s went on and although IPTV
services were introduced during
that decade and into the 2000s,
wide-scale take-up was hindered
by the technology often being
limited to specific regions, with
slow connection speeds making
for variable quality.
That situation has changed
dramatically in only a few years.
Super-fast broadband is generally
available today at competitive prices
but, perhaps most significantly,
the connected television set
has reappeared as the Smart TV.
Leading from the front is Samsung,
which is using the RVU (remote user
interface) protocol to stream IPTV
subscriber services to its D6000
Series of receivers and so do away
with set-top boxes (STBs).

XENTAURIX media and
broadcast solution

German company Artec
Technologies is among the
professional video manufacturers
developing systems for this new way
of delivering IPTV. Chief Technology
Officer and Managing Director
Ingo Hoffmann explains that artec
“does not depend on STBs” but
instead uses apps and standard

browsers to deliver both internet
TV and IPTV services. Artec’s main
media and broadcast platform is
the XENTAURIX range of products,
including encoders, streaming
and web servers, databanks and
storage for live and time-shifted
transmission to mobiles, tablets
and TV sets. During IBC 2013 Artec
introduced its specific Mobile TV
product, featuring an integrated
“time machine” for streaming
recordings in conjunction with
information from the EPG (Electronic
Programme Guide).
Hoffmann observes that today’s
TV broadcasters are using every
possible and available means
of distribution to attract bigger
audiences. This, he says, involves
the combination of HbbTV (Hybrid
broadcast broadband TV) becoming
the standard for harmonised
broadcast and broadband delivery
to connected TVs and STBs with
people using personal mobile
devices to watch video material.
“One thing you can definitely count on
- both today and in the foreseeable
future - is that TV offerings will
be determined by the audience’s
viewing habits and not the other
way around,” Hoffmann comments.
The ‘applications for any device’
approach is also being taken
by Swedish software developer
Accedo. Multi-screen operation
for all devices and platforms is
an emerging market for Accedo,
shown by the recent launch of the
AppGrid management system. Chief
Executive Michael Lantz says the
necessity for service operators and
other providers of IPTV/streaming
channels is to make maintaining and
managing “evolving requirements”
on multiple platforms easier. “Many
of our customers have launched 1015 applications on various platforms,
and it’s cumbersome to make sure
the feature set is kept up to date
while platforms are upgraded all the
time,” he explains. “This is exactly
what our AppGrid app management
platform is designed to solve.”
Video and audio quality on
IPTV and streaming services has
risen considerably in recent years
through more sophisticated coding
technologies. AVC (advanced video
coding, formally known as H.264)

Accedo’s Associated Press Product screenshot

laid the foundations for this. Its
advances are being taken further
by its successor, HEVC (High
Efficiency Video Coding, designated
H.265), which was approved as a
compression standard by the ITU-T
in April this year.
“The cost for delivering high quality
video has been reduced significantly
and with the emergence of HEVC we
believe that distribution challenges
will essentially be a non-issue, at
least in developed countries,”
comments Lantz. “The industry
implications of this are enormous.
Historically, distribution quality of
video has been the fundamental
reason why cable and satellite
technologies have dominated
TV distribution. This advantage
will disappear and OTT providers
can finally compete directly with
traditional TV technologies.”
Canadian manufacturer Digital
Rapids is supporting HEVC in
its newest developments, while
Director of Marketing Mike Nann
points out increasing AVC encoding
quality and performance. The
company offers products for both
live/linear transmission and filebased encoding and transcoding.
On the live and multiscreen side it
recently announced the StreamZ
Live 4000EX encoder, which is, like
the overall StreamZ range, designed
to work for both OTT (Over-TheTop) streaming services and closed
platform IPTV networks.
Nann feels that for both live/
linear and file-based transfer
service providers are demanding
flexibility, future proofing, efficient
workflows and scalability for current
and emerging platforms alike. “The
flexibility requirement stems from the
ongoing fragmentation of technical
requirements between today’s
plethora of viewing devices,” he
explains. “Even as standardisation
efforts progress, it continues to
be the case today that no one set

of technologies or parameters is
universally supported across all
platforms and devices, often forcing
operators to deploy at least two of
them in parallel to reach all of their
target viewing devices.”
The IPTV and streaming sectors
are also coming to terms with a
new standard for delivering video
over large networks, including the
internet, using conventional HTTP
(Hypertext Transfer Protocol) web
servers that adapt bit rate streams
according to a user’s bandwidth
and CPU capacity. Development
of MPEG-DASH (Dynamic Adaptive
Streaming over HTTP) began in
2010, culminating in its publication
as an ISO/IEC standard in April 2012.
Nann observes that in the
short term MPEG-DASH might
“compound the challenge” faced
by the industry until support for it
“is ubiquitous across target devices”.
However, he adds that short-term
added complexity is worthwhile for
long-term gains.
George Boath, Vice President of
International Sales for Enterprise
Products at Telestream, comments
that new technologies have solved
an enduring trade-off in getting
video material over IP connections.
“Operators always want better
quality at faster speeds with a low
cost of ownership,” he says. “Until
recently they’ve been told they can
have two of those but not all three.
But with the combination of x264
codecs and greater efficiency from
GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)
accelerators gives all three.”
Telestream expanded its Vantage
range of video transcoding and
workflow products at NAB 2013
with new features including a
transcoder for IPTV and cable
video on demand (VoD) workflows
and support for HEVC. Boath says
these technological advances are
necessary because viewers expect
CONTINUED ON PAGE 49


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of In Broadcast - October 2013

In Broadcast - October 2013
In This Issue
InNews: Fox Turkey Upgrades GV Systems
InNews: Pebble Beach Wins TV Globo Deal
InFocus: Virtual Sets Made Easy
InStudio: Blackcam Debuts Remote – Control Systems
InGear: Fujifilm Launches 4K Cine Zoom Lens
InSound: Roland Introduces the VC-1 Series
InMedia: NRK Speeds Workflow With Telestream
In Broadcast - October 2013 - Intro
In Broadcast - October 2013 - In Broadcast - October 2013
In Broadcast - October 2013 - Cover2
In Broadcast - October 2013 - In This Issue
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InNews: Fox Turkey Upgrades GV Systems
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 5
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InNews: Pebble Beach Wins TV Globo Deal
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 7
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 8
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 9
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 10
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 11
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 12
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 13
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 14
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 15
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 16
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 17
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 18
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 19
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 20
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 21
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 22
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 23
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 24
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 25
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 26
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 27
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InFocus: Virtual Sets Made Easy
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 29
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 30
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 31
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 32
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 33
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InStudio: Blackcam Debuts Remote – Control Systems
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 35
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 36
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 37
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 38
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 39
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 40
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 41
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 42
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InGear: Fujifilm Launches 4K Cine Zoom Lens
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 44
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 45
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 46
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 47
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 48
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 49
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 50
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 51
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 52
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 53
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InSound: Roland Introduces the VC-1 Series
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 55
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 56
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 57
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 58
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 59
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 60
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 61
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 62
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 63
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 64
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 65
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 66
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 67
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 68
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 69
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 70
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 71
In Broadcast - October 2013 - InMedia: NRK Speeds Workflow With Telestream
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 73
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 74
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 75
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 76
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 77
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 78
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 79
In Broadcast - October 2013 - 80
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S1
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S2
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S3
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S4
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S5
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S6
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S7
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S8
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S9
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S10
In Broadcast - October 2013 - S11
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