In Broadcast - December 2020 - 52

52

www.inbroadcast.com | Vol: 10 - Issue 12 | InReview 2020

InStudio

pixitmedia - Boldly going to
Storage and Beyond
Paul Cameron, Global Managing Director, pixitmedia reflects on a challenging year,
and looks forward at an ever-evolving 2021...
Lessons from 2020
If there's one experience I think all
studios shared when lockdown started
this year, it would be the very sudden
and immediate halt in their content
supply chain. Film shoots and live
events were no longer feasible, so no
new content was being created. Many
projects that our customers were
expecting to work on throughout the
year got stopped overnight.
From the viewpoint of our clients
who were adapting to this change,
their challenge was finding a quick
way to grant their creatives users and
editors access to content remotely.
This setup has various implications on
network bandwidth, for example: how
users share and collaborate on data.
Whilst our solution is a softwaredefined storage data management
platform, our company vision is about
going 'beyond storage'. It's not just
about a repository for data, we enable
access to data in a collaborative
and engaging way. More than just
providing storage to store content,
pixitmedia is involved in the supply
chain and pipeline of edited work
within studios. The whole ethos around
pixstor and ngenea, our core solutions,
is about performance, collaboration,
and access to data, whether it's on
premise, in the cloud, or a hybrid
combination of both models.
Looking back, studios adopting
cloud solutions has been a slow but
gradual trend over the course of the
last few years. The pandemic has
certainly accelerated the change as
companies needed to rapidly speed up
the process and adjust quickly to stay
competitive. The capability of editing
and working in the cloud is much more
advanced than it was a few years ago.
Today studios are able to deploy whole
studios in the cloud, as well as
having scalable storage that
enables that to happen.

Considered Cloud
The pandemic has forced a shift
in the way we create and consume
audiovisual content, probably forever.
From a business perspective, it's
unlikely the way studios operate
will return exactly as they were the capability to work in the cloud
has been tried and tested. But it's
important to highlight that there are
also pitfalls.
Cloud isn't the answer for
everything. Companies need to take
a considered approach to how they
use cloud going forward. It's not
necessarily efficient to run everything
from the cloud, as there are huge costs
associated with cloud usage - costs not
always accounted for beforehand.
It's not just about the work and
resources within the cloud. It's
about the extraction, the ingest, the
egress data in and out the cloud that
is expensive. In that sense, we're
currently working with our clients to
understand their workflows, where
their users are based, what content
they need to egress and work on, and
what performance requirements they
have in doing so. Then, we design
a solution that takes the benefit
of all the different technologies

available in an effective way. Studios
that moved to the cloud will remain
competitive, but the studios that
will persevere are the ones that
have moved to the cloud in a wellorchestrated, well-thought-out way.
Because pixstor is a software-defined
solution that can run both on-premise
and in the cloud, we are able to advise
our clients without bias. They bring
their choice of technology whilst we
look at their project, media asset
and project management tools, and
make sure they are best integrated
into the storage and technology of
their choosing. We want users to have
the same experience regardless of
the underlying technology and data
provision.
A great use case for cloud is when
studios have predictable peaks in
workloads with cyclical projects over
the year. In those scenarios, getting
access to cloud resources for those
peaks is more efficient than buying
on-premise technology big enough to
cope with peaks that only happen for a
short period of time.
There has definitely been an
immediate reaction to adopt Cloud
technology,
and
understandably
so. Though, the mistake lies when
studios move entirely into the cloud
based on one successful use case.
Storing data that needs to be accessed
regularly in the cloud is often not a
cost-effective scenario due to the
expensive ingresses and egresses. I
predict studios will pull back from the
cloud in some way, especially when it
comes to the type of data, how often
it is accessed and how much of it is in
there - that's what determines a hybrid
cloud strategy.
Packed
with
intelligent
data
management tools and powerful APIs
featured as standard, pixstor
helps studios streamline
workflow
and
drive

efficiencies. ngenea, in turn, allows
studios to quickly and securely
transport data to and from globally
distributed cloud, object storage,
traditional NAS storage and archive
resources - automatically moving data
into the 'right cost' resource according
to value and usage as work teams and
business needs demand.
Stay nimble
Because pixstor is a softwaredefined solution, therefore flexible
with a number of different hardware
technologies and cloud vendors,
it's crucial for us to stay up to date
with trending technologies. Looking
particularly at the role of GPUs,
we've identified a big rise in NVIDIA
across the market. The media and
entertainment industry is now looking
at how to harness the capability and
power of GPUs in workflows and
pipelines, leveraging them for very
high-resolution playback, machine
learning, and real time virtual reality.
One thing companies need to
consider carefully is technology
doesn't stand still. Solutions that
are thriving today might be replaced
in the future years. Therefore, my
advice for businesses in the media
and entertainment industry is to
avoid investing in locked-in tools that
don't engage with other services. By
doing so, it gives them a competitive
advantage as new technologies come
along, deploying them into their
systems.

Paul Cameron enjoyed over twenty
years with IBM, where he led sales
and client teams to drive growth and
deliver success, helping his clients
store, manage, and protect their most
valuable asset: data.
He was named as a member of the
Board of Directors and helped IBM
reseller Tectrade expand into the USA.
Paul recently joined pixitmedia to
lead the company's vision and global
strategies. Today Paul is driving the
business to push boundaries and
facilitate
seamless
collaboration
to enable the power of ideas for
customers.


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In Broadcast - December 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of In Broadcast - December 2020

Contents
In Broadcast - December 2020 - Intro
In Broadcast - December 2020 - Cover1
In Broadcast - December 2020 - Cover2
In Broadcast - December 2020 - Contents
In Broadcast - December 2020 - 4
In Broadcast - December 2020 - 5
In Broadcast - December 2020 - 6
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In Broadcast - December 2020 - Cover3
In Broadcast - December 2020 - Cover4
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