Light Reading

Elemental Shows Off 4K

Alan Breznick
Repost This

Preparing to make a splash with 4K Ultra HD video encoding at the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi, Elemental Technologies is showing off its latest technical capabilities and boasting about the progress that it's making with 4K.

An aggressive upstart in the video encoding market, Elemental Technologies Inc. (ETI) , staged an event in London on Tuesday to demonstrate how it can encode 4K sports programming at a bit rate of 60 frames per second. While lower frame rates might be suitable for movies and other video programming in 4K, 60 frames per second is considered the "full frame rate" for fast-moving sports action.

Elemental -- which competes against Envivio Inc. (NASDAQ: ENVI), Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT), Media Excel Inc. , Thomson Video Networks , and other vendors in the encoding space -- said it achieved the 60-frame rate using the new high-efficiency video coding (HEVC)/H.265 codec. The HEVC standard, which is about 50 percent more efficient than MPEG-4/H.264 codec, is considered crucial for encoding 4K video, which consumes four times as much bandwidth as standard HD programming.

"Unlike cinema, live sports are best viewed at higher frame rates," said Aslam Khader, chief product officer for Elemental, in a prepared statrement. "In 2014, we expect live sports to drive 4K Ultra HD adoption by those programmers and pay TV operators seeking to deliver a more compelling sports entertainment experience."

In particular, Elemental executives, who count such major sports programmers as ESPN and Eurosport among their customers, seem to have their eye on the two major quadrennial sports events coming up in 2014 -- the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia in February and soccer's World Cup tournament in Brazil next summer. Although they haven't disclosed with whom they might be working to deliver 4K programming from either event, company officials have been pointing towards both events for a while.

In 2012, Elemental teamed up with the British Broadcasting Corp. (BBC) , Eurosport, Canada's Broadcast Media Consortium, and Latin America's Terra to deliver HD coverage of the Summer Olympics in London. Besides ESPN, current Elemental customers include the BBC, Home Box Office Inc. (HBO) , Japan's NHK, Spain's Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF), and Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), whose NBC Universal unit will feature wall-to-wall coverage of the Sochi Winter Olympics in the US.

Elemental, which has been touting its 4K HEVC capabilities at broadcasting and cable industry events all year, is also claiming to be the global market leader in multiscreen and over-the-top (OTT) video processing. It cites a report issued last week by SNL Kagan that ranked the company first in transcoding both live standard digital and live HD streams in a majority of regions around the world.

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Blogger
12/12/2013 | 11:57:02 AM
Re: Who Will be First to do 4K?
that's a great question, Karl. Wish I knew the answer. I'll bet that the bandwidth caps will only be raised grudgingly, and probably later than consumers would like. Next year should be a very telling time for the future of 4K. 
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/11/2013 | 7:07:36 PM
Re: Who Will be First to do 4K?
Interesting post Alan. Very curious to see the technical specifics behind Netflix's 4K streams next year, and just how much users have to sacrifice in terms of stream quality. 4K more than anything else seems like it's on a collision course with bandwidth caps. Wonder if those caps will scale accordingly when the time comes?
User Rank: Blogger
12/11/2013 | 5:41:48 PM
Who Will be First to do 4K?
Elemental seems to have to deliver 4K programming for somebody at the Winter Olympics in February. So the question is who will go first? A broadcaster? A satellite TV provider? Or even a cable operator? Place your bets here now, 
Flash Poll
LRTV Custom TV
Optimizing SDN & NFV Architectures Through Application Awareness

4|23|14   |   6:24   |   (0) comments

Jerome Tollet, CTO at Qosmos, explains how network equipment vendors and operators deploying SDN and NFV can take advantage of network intelligence delivered by DPI to strengthen products and services.
LRTV Custom TV
Wind River Demonstrates Carrier-Grade Software for NFV

4|22|14   |   5:00   |   (0) comments

Wind River VP of Product Management, Glenn Seiler, takes a look the industry's first and only complete NFV software platform designed specifically for the unique carrier-grade and high-performance needs of telecom networks.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Eyes Big Technology Shifts

4|16|14   |   03:02   |   (4) comments

US cable engineers are facing a lot of heavy lifting in the coming years, notes Light Reading Cable/Video Practice Leader Alan Breznick.
LRTV Custom TV
Maximizing Customer Experience & Assuring Service Delivery in an IP World

4|15|14   |   4:57   |   (0) comments

Steven Shalita, VP of Marketing, NetScout Systems, Inc., discusses the challenges cable/MSO operators face in assuring the delivery of new IP-based services. Key points include the value of proactively managing performance, and using rich analytics and operational intelligence to better understand service and usage trends, make smarter business decisions and ...
LRTV Documentaries
Bye-Bye DVD: Consumers Embrace Digital Video

4|10|14   |   04:17   |   (7) comments

Veteran video analyst Colin Dixon, founder and principal analyst of nScreenMedia, says research shows 56% are using digital video already.
LRTV Documentaries
Video: TW Cable Puts Multicast Gateways to the Test

4|8|14   |   04:13   |   (1) comment

Tom Gonder, a chief architect at Time Warner Cable, explains how its trial of multicast gateways is impacting IP-based video plans.
LRTV Custom TV
Managing & Monetizing Big Data in Operator Environments

4|7|14   |     |   (1) comment

At Mobile World Congress, Gigamon's Director of Service Provider Solutions, Andy Huckridge, and Heavy Reading Analyst Sarah Wallace discuss the 'big data' issues facing carriers and operators today.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Data Center Energy – Build Your Data Center in a Modular Way

4|7|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments

Dr. Fang Liangzhou, VP Network Energy Product Line, shared his thoughts about the challenges for data centers during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Agile Network Solution – An Overview of Huawei's Agile Network Solution

4|7|14   |   2:31   |   (0) comments

Ajay Gupta, Director of Product Marketing, Networking Product Line, gives an overview of the Agile Network Solutions during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s eLTE Voice Trunking, Video and Data Applied for Railways

4|7|14   |   1:38   |   (0) comments

Gottfried Winter is the Sales Director at Funkwerk, a German specialist in GSM-r terminals and a long-time partner of Huawei. At CeBIT 2014, Winter talks to Light Reading about this partnership and the integration of enhanced voice trunking, video and data functions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
LeaseWeb Speaks Highly of Huawei's Datacenter Products

4|7|14   |   1:37   |   (0) comments

Rene Olde Olthof, Operations Director LeaseWeb, talks about the next data center transformation during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Documentaries
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture

4|3|14   |   07:11   |   (8) comments

Shamim Akhtar, Comcast's architect and senior director of network strategy, explains why the cable company is moving to a more distributed network architecture.
Hot Topics
WhatsApp Threatens Carrier VoLTE
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/18/2014
The Hungry, Hungry Cloud
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/22/2014
Who's Ready to Play Broadband?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/21/2014
What's the Magic of Private Equity?
Carolyn Mathas, 4/22/2014
AT&T Turns Up Gig Heat in 21 New Metros
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/21/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed