Velocix CEO on pay-TV's streaming shift and how to get more out of cloud DVR

Jim Brickmeier has seen the pay-TV industry evolve from its early foray into the worlds of video-on-demand (VoD) and digital ad insertion, the advent of the cloud DVR and into today's streaming era.

Brickmeier's video roots extend back to Concurrent Computer Corp., a VoD pioneer whose video storage and delivery assets are now part of Vecima Networks. But in more recent years he's been a top exec at Velocix, a streaming software company that was tied into Nokia before being carved out and acquired by Constellation Software in 2018. In addition to working with pure-play streaming companies, Velocix also has partnerships with several major service providers, including Vodafone and Liberty Global, Telefónica, Telus and Deutsche Telekom.

Brickmeier, who recently was promoted to CEO of Velocix, joined the Light Reading podcast to discuss his priorities in the new role, where Velocix is seeking growth opportunities and key trends occurring in the streaming arena.

"The key for us is in continuing to grow the business," Brickmeier said, noting that many of the company's existing accounts focused on adding capacity during the early phases of the pandemic that cause streaming usage to surge. One growth focus area is CDN Broker, a new in-stream switching system for private and public CDNs.

And while pay-TV continues to decline, operator migrations to IP-based technology is considered a source of growth at Velocix.

"We're starting to see some serious movement in that direction, where [service providers are saying] now's the time we've to start actively promoting the new IP platforms and transitioning subscribers over," he explained. "And in doing that, there's a reevaluation of the underlying platforms."

Brickmeier said another trend he's focused on is helping streaming partners balance their use of public and private CDNs.

Public CDNs, he points out, tend to be fully managed and "fairly expensive as you start to grow the amount of traffic that's being delivered. Velocix offers a way that they can supplement some of those public CDNs with private CDN capacity in places where it's appropriate. So if you have enough traffic in a particular region, you can implement some private CDN capacity."

You can download a lightly edited transcript of the podcast here. If you want to skip around and listen, here are a few topics discussed during this podcast:

  • An overview of where Velocix fits into the streaming ecosystem (1:00)
  • Brickmeier on his priorities as Velocix's new CEO and where he expects the next wave of growth to originate from with respect to products and segments of the streaming market (3:45)
  • How the migration to IP video is becoming a path to growth among service providers even as the overall pay-TV market continues to decline (7:00)
  • An exploration of the economic drivers and tradeoffs for using public and private CDNs (8:00)
  • Detail on how a new product, called CDN Broker, can help partners manage a multi-CDN environment (10:00)
  • A look into the advantages of open caching systems, particularly for live content, and how stakeholders such as content providers, broadcasters and ISPs are ironing out the business models for open caching (11:40)
  • How service providers can further monetize the cloud DVR and why YouTube TV's approach could be a prime example for others to emulate (18:00)
  • Brickmeier shares his views on how 4K qualify content is still weaving itself into the streaming arena (26:00)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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