Kasenna Leads IPTV Test Charge
Kasenna claims IPTV milestone
Video systems vendor Kasenna has developed an IPTV test-bed with partners HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) intended to prove to service providers that telco TV environments can scale to more than 1 million users with a relatively small deployment of service delivery and support systems. (See Vendors Test IPTV Setup.)
Kasenna, which sells video servers and IPTV middleware, is already involved as a video server supplier for a number of live IPTV deployments and has signed up with some big-name partners in the telco TV world. (See Kasenna Deployed in Russia, Kasenna Powers Jazztel, Cavalier Picks Kasenna, and Ericsson Brings the IPTV.)
Now, though, it's looking to position itself as a credible alternative to Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) as a supplier of an IPTV middleware system that can be deployed by Tier 1 carriers and scale efficiently as subscriber numbers grow to seven figures, as they are set to do in the next few years. Orange (NYSE: FTE), for example, already has 600,000 IPTV customers, while PCCW Ltd. (NYSE: PCW; Hong Kong: 0008) in Hong Kong has 700,000. (See Europe to Dominate IPTV Growth.)
The battle to win the attention of major operators among IPTV middleware players is intense, as vendors such as Kudelski Group , Espial Group Inc. , Dreampark AB , NDS Ltd. , and others attempt to join the chasing pack that includes the likes of Orca Interactive Ltd. , Nokia Networks (Myrio), Thomson S.A. (NYSE: TMS; Euronext Paris: 18453), Minerva Networks Inc. , and UTStarcom Inc. (Nasdaq: UTSI). (See Who Makes What: IP Video Systems.) Microsoft, along with its partner Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), remains the company to beat out for the big deals. (See Microsoft IPTV Hits Spain, DT Plans M&A, IPTV Push, Alcatel-Lucent Unveils IPTV Strategy, and Microsoft Adds Three for IPTV.)
So Kasenna has set up a simulated IPTV test network in HP's Grenoble, France, labs to show how, under certain conditions, its middleware and video server software can support the video-over-broadband needs of 1 million subscribers with just five HP ProLiant servers using Intel Dual-Core Xeon processors.
Of course that means Kasenna has created a set of criteria, such as the number of customers making on-network requests via their set-top boxes (STBs), the nature of those requests, and related network conditions, that will probably never match an exact carrier scenario.
For example, the test-bed assumes that for every 200,000 subscribers that are using a video service, there is a 60 percent concurrency rate for active set-top box use. That means, only 120,000 of the 200,000 are using a service that is making service requests of the network, while the remainder are using services such as STB-based PVR (personal video recorder) that aren't utilizing network resources, a user profile that's typical of a Friday or Saturday evening, according to Kasenna.
"We think that's a reasonable profile based on our experience," says Allan Linder, the vendor's spokesman.
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