& cplSiteName &

A Flashy Approach to VOD

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
4/25/2007
50%
50%

Flash memory, a storage technology usually used in iPods, digital cameras, and other portable consumer electronics, is starting to gain favor among top video-on-demand (VOD) server manufacturers as costs ebb and performance flows.

SeaChange International Inc. (Nasdaq: SEAC), a leading VOD server and software supplier, is the first to announce formal intentions for Flash, a technology that end up saving big bucks for cable operators and telcos alike.

But SeaChange certainly won't be the last to enlist Flash, as several of its rivals are also giving the technology a close look and determining how it might fit into their product roadmaps. Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT), however, has already passed on Flash, in favor of its central strategy to use DRAM (dynamic random access memory).

SeaChange president and CEO Bill Styslinger confirmed in an earnings call in mid-March that his company will introduce a Flash server in the second half of 2007. He also talked up the technology's durability and non-volatile nature.

"Flash is important because it eliminates the need for disk drives," he said, noting that SeaChange had already demonstrated a prototype during a Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) engineering conference. "Operators are anxious to eliminate the spinning disk needed with all disk and current memory servers."

SeaChange, which already populates its VOD architecture with disk- and RAM-based storage, is expected to unveil its Flashy server next month in Las Vegas at The Cable Show. The product is slated for commercial availability by the third quarter.

SeaChange director of server products Bang Chang says the new entrant will find a home at the edge of the VOD architecture. That's where 20 percent of the most popular titles in the on-demand library are typically replicated. Operators tend to use this approach to ensure the quality of the VOD service and to prevent the operator from having to stream all titles from a central location.

Creating a disk-less VOD edge, Bang Chang says, will reduce costs for powering and cooling, as well as the personnel required to maintain those distributed edge locations. He says cable and telco operators have made opex reduction "the number one priority for us."

Each SeaChange Flash server will hold about 300 hours of standard-def video -- probably not enough to contain more than 20 to 30 percent of the larger VOD libraries in use today. But Bang Chang says SeaChange's MediaCluster architecture will remedy this because it can access and manage up to eight, 300-hour Flash server sites.

Other VOD vendors are also putting Flash under the microscope.

"We are investigating it right now," says Tim Dodge, director of marketing and product management for Concurrent Computer Corp. (Nasdaq: CCUR) "I think everybody's looking at this technology right now."

Include C-COR Corp. (Nasdaq: CCBL) in that exploratory mix, as well. C-COR, according to an email from its VP of on-demand strategy, Basil Badawiyeh, "has looked at Flash as we're considering the short- and long-term storage requirements of our unified video delivery platform that includes VOD, advertising, switched unicast, time-shifted TV, and other low bit-rate storage requirements."

To Page 2

(7)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
dmunoz
50%
50%
dmunoz,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:08:32 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
The question for me is when the Flash price will be competitive against the regular hard-drive price. then we can talk about pure-ástorage applications like nPVR, time shifting, etc. It seems that Flash videoservers alone are not the best solution for that. Maybe other industries more general like laptops, etc can drop the price once they substitute the disks by flash drives.
rationator
50%
50%
rationator,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:44 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
What kind of data rate transfer are the flash memory units being used for these VoD applications rated for? This could have some impact on the architecture of the VoD data centers
MM123
50%
50%
MM123,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:38 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
www.edgeware.tv ship a flash based VOD server - Orbit 2x
larytet
50%
50%
larytet,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:38 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
In the simplest (and cheapest) type we have a serial connection working at 50-100 Mbits/s rate

see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F...
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:37 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
Thanks, I'll definitely have to put them on my radar. Just waiting to see when they will take that next all important step -- trial or deployment (company doesn't supply many details there yet). As for SeaChange, definitely significant that a vod vendor, particularly one with lots of deployments, is entering the market with a flash product.
Could bode well for Flash's vod prospects.
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:36 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
Thanks. I'm now told that they have trials and commercial installs with tier 1/2/3 cable/telco/broadband ops and some hospitality-realted deals...but aren't at liberty to disclose much yet, so I'll certainly be staying in touch with them


MM123
50%
50%
MM123,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:09:36 PM
re: A Flashy Approach to VOD
Edgeware are involved in trials and deployments in US, Asia and Europe since half a year but I think only Maxisat in Finland has been publicly announced to date.
From The Founder
Either we perform a complete 'factory reset' on the way the telecom industry creates and deploys virtualization, or we face the consequences.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
The Urgency of Commercial 5G Services

4|26|17   |     |   (0) comments


The progress of 5G has been closely monitored in the industry. At the 2017 Brooklyn 5G Summit, the sense of urgency for a commercial 5G launch had started to surface among operators.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
How Diversity Helps Comcast Mirror Its Customer Base

4|26|17   |   2:55   |   (0) comments


Diversity brings innovation, creative ideas and a way to reflect the broad spectrum of your customer base, Comcast Director of Customer Experience Jenelle Champlin says.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Mobile Operators & Video

4|25|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ovum's Ed Barton discusses the latest mobile operator strategies for mobile video.
LRTV Custom TV
Infinera Introduces Instant Network

4|20|17   |     |   (1) comment


Mike Capuano, vice president of marketing at Infinera, discusses the advancement from Instant Bandwidth to new Instant Network capabilities, which include Bandwidth License Pools, Moveable Licenses and Automated Capacity Engineering (ACE).
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Vodafone's Eubank on Sponsors, Mentors & Moving On Up

4|19|17   |   4:25   |   (0) comments


Vodafone America's Head of Operations Kimberly Eubank breaks down the difference between a sponsor and a mentor and shares why both made a big difference in her career.
LRTV Custom TV
NYC Auto Show: Are We Smart Yet?

4|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


The auto industry is facing some big transformations as electric vehicles, autonomous technology and connected cars are seen as the future of the industry. During the much-anticipated NY international auto show, there was an emergence of new technology and mobility service on the show floor. Aside from performance, brands like Lincoln, Hyundai, Honda, Mercedes and ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Impact of Video

4|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


David Mercer from Strategy Analytics discusses the impact of video on current strategies.
LRTV Custom TV
Pardeep Kohli Discusses Network Transformation & the Market Opportunity for the 'New' Mavenir Systems

4|13|17   |     |   (0) comments


In a brief discussion at MWC 2017, Heavy Reading analyst Adi Kishore talks to Pardeep Kohli, CEO, Mavenir Systems about the creation of the 'new Mavenir' and some of the key challenges facing operators in today's market. A key theme of the discussion centers around operator need for software-only, virtualized solutions and how they will need to adapt to ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Tech Maverick Shares Her Tips for Gender Inclusivity

4|12|17   |   7:28   |   (0) comments


Wendy Hall Bohling, a corporate escapee, author and gender exclusivity consultant, tells her story of sexism, bias and progress along the road to gender equality in the workforce.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at MWC 2017

4|11|17   |     |   (0) comments


At Mobile World Congress 2017, the biggest mobile industry gathering of the year, Huawei showcased its new innovations and solutions with the theme "Open Road," which focuses on cloud, 5G, operation transformation, videos and consumer-oriented products. Its campaign has been recognized by three awards given by GSMA.
LRTV Custom TV
China Telecom NFV Infrastructure on RSD

4|6|17   |     |   (0) comments


Lynn Comp, senior director of market development of Intel, is joined by Chong Zhang, storage engineer at Inspur and Ou Li Yan, architect for technology strategies of China Telecom, for a discussion of what NFV brings.
LRTV Custom TV
Nokia's IMPACT Software Demo

4|6|17   |     |   (0) comments


Khamis Abulgubein of IoT market development at Nokia demonstrates IMPACT (intelligent management platform for all connected things), a software solution with a horizontal approach to managing any device on any application.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Brazos Hall - Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Surprise! AT&T Markets 4G Advances as '5G Evolution'
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/25/2017
Did Verizon Outbid AT&T for Straight Path?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/25/2017
First Year TIPs the Scale Toward Success
Denise Culver, 4/24/2017
Verizon: Small Biz in Cybercrooks' Crosshairs
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/27/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.