Online video management company thePlatform is partnering with Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU) to offer pay-TV operators a scalable, multi-screen video platform that supports delivery of linear TV, video-on-demand and TV Everywhere services.
The solution offers advanced video management capabilities together with efficient video distribution through a content delivery network deployed by the service provider, offering the content security and QoS found today on TV set-top boxes to a broader range of devices.
"We feel like we have the technology and the products for it, and we feel like the market needs it," Ian Blaine, thePlatform CEO told FierceIPTV. "What I'm talking about is extending this cloud-based notion of managing video to actually manage TV--to not just get Internet content to the TV, but to manage TV in this style."
Comcast CEO Brian Roberts is expected to announce on Thursday that the MSO will be among the first customers to use the next-gen service from thePlatform and Alcatel-Lucent.
ThePlatform, which is owned by Comcast, will be working with one of the more experienced IPTV vendors in the world. Alcatel-Lucent has 60-plus IPTV and 45 mobile TV deployments under its belt across the globe. Alcatel-Lucent also brings an efficient and enhanced content delivery technology, Velocix, which Blaine said was a backbone to the alliance, in that it will help guarantee a high-quality experience for the viewer.
"Being able to layer in that technology, makes this a winner across all devices," Blaine said. "Our belief is there is going to be evolution, more than anything, so we have to be able to work with existing systems, but it ultimately adds up to a pretty significant revolution. At the end of the day you're going to have this nimble, cloud-based service at your fingertips if you're a pay-TV operator, and it's going to give you an extreme competitive edge and the ability to give consumers what they want."
Alcatel-Lucent's Velocix Digital Media Delivery Platform enables service providers to build and operate their own dedicated CDN as an alternative to shared third-party CDNs, saving money and allowing service providers to keep high-value content in their own network, rather than a third-party network.
Partnering with Alcatel-Lucent also gives thePlatform access to 1,200 video specialists, close to 3,000 system integrators and more than 10,000 service experts. Couple that with Alcatel-Lucent's technology, and thePlatform has just stepped up its game to the point that they can offer a complete story for pay-TV.
"When you look at what our customers, being service providers, need, they're trying to figure out how to deal with online video," Derrick Forest, SVP of global IP video solutions at Alcatel-Lucent told FierceIPTV. "But they're also trying to figure out how to advance their existing pay-TV services to the IP video world. We believe we're bringing together unique organizations that offer a best of breed solution to service providers across the globe. The cloud, we think, is really one of the key focuses for delivering multi-screen video services forward."
Blaine said the companies already were working on several opportunities but declined to speculate about potential deployments.
Forrest, meanwhile, said Alcatel-Lucent saw the partnership playing out globally, with opportunities not only in the U.S. and North America, but also in Europe and Asia/Pac.
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