The following post is from Susan Hauser, Corporate Vice President, Enterprise and Partner Group, Microsoft.
On Monday at the 2014 NAB Show exhibition, Microsoft is showing the latest technology innovations for the broadcast media industry. We are also sharing how customers and partners like FansChoice.tv and Ooyala are reaching thousands of viewers with Microsoft technology. Monday’s announcements are part of our ongoing commitment to enable a wide variety of broadcasters to reach more customers using technologies that are secure, easy to use and cost-effective. You will also see us announce the new Microsoft Azure Media Services capabilities and Skype’s new integrated solution for broadcasters “Skype TX”.
With Microsoft Azure Media Services, broadcasters can focus on content and leave the delivery to us.
FansChoice.tv, a collaboration between American Motorcyclist Association Pro, International Motor Sports Association and NASCAR, turned to Microsoft Azure to quickly build and launch a new live stream-capable website featuring the ability to stream live races and offer access to a library of exciting on-demand racing content. This provided fans at home access to an array of content not covered by broadcast television, via the Web, tablets, smartphones and PCs.
Ooyala also announced a new strategic relationship with Microsoft to develop, promote and accelerate the deployment of next-generation IP video services utilizing Media Services in conjunction with Ooyala’s Web-based video distribution, analytics and monetization technology. Combining Microsoft’s investments in video infrastructure, encoding, packaging and streaming with Ooyala’s strengths in content management, analytics and monetization provides customers with all the elements they need for online video development.
As broadcasters look to the cloud to accelerate the delivery of premium content, security is a key consideration. Microsoft is deeply committed to security and, in support of those efforts, is offering a new license delivery service that allows customers to apply Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) or PlayReady encryption to help protect and secure their video content.
Media Services was built to meet the demands of every broadcaster, so organizations of any size, from NBC Sports to United Kingdom-based blinkbox, have access to a powerful and scalable cloud platform that grows with their business. A recent example is the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, which were delivered to audiences in 22 countries across four continents by broadcasters using Media Services to provide high definition live coverage of every event.
On Monday, we are announcing a new solution available in the coming year for broadcasters, Skype TX, which can make any location in the world a professional studio. Skype TX is studio-grade software that delivers high-quality audio and video output to improve broadcast and media programming to people around the world. Skype TX includes call handling management for multiple, simultaneous Skype calls on one management interface, is free of audio and visual distractions such as call notifications and ads, and maintains HD-SDI Video output and input essential for broadcasters. This improved offering is a result of the recent Skype acquisition of long-time broadcast partner Cat and Mouse. We encourage you to visit www.skypeinmedia.com for more information on how Skype TX can enrich your broadcast and media programming.
Providing the Platform for the New Media Model
Over the past decade, cloud computing changed the media landscape immeasurably, offering nearly any media company new delivery options to extend their content to more people.
Consumers’ options have multiplied as well; the convergence of online, digital content and the myriad of new form factors have created new expectations. Customers can watch what they want, when they want, where they want on screen sizes from 3 inches to 80 inches and everywhere in between. Broadcasters need a solution that delivers on all fronts.
With Microsoft’s cloud-based offerings, media companies can grow advertising and paid subscription revenues by extending the reach of their digital distribution capabilities and their brand, as well as launching new channels and services more quickly. They also have control over broadcast quality and the customer experience to create an offering that is consistent with their brand.
With products like Skype TX, Microsoft also empowers content development collaboration between journalists and creative staff. In short, Microsoft is providing the tools that help broadcasters achieve their multi-screen broadcasting goals in a profitable, efficient and timely way. We’re grateful for the opportunity to partner with these organizations to help them reimagine their business and to be a part of this year’s event.