CES 2020: Verizon Media Talks Multi-CDN Advantages; Technicolor Lands New Security Certifications

LAS VEGAS — In mid-September, Verizon Media shared that its streaming platform was being made available on Microsoft Azure, offering access to a wide range of Azure capabilities (Azure Media Services Video Indexer and Azure Blob Storage), and promising simplified workflows.

At CES 2020, Ariff Sidi, chief product officer for Verizon Media Group, shared that after a few months of beta use of the integration for customers, the offering will be made generally available this quarter.

The premium suite of features being offered with Verizon Media Streaming on Azure aim to simplify every task of OTT streaming, covering encoding, delivery, customization and insights. Verizon Media’s enterprise-grade, integrated solution includes ad insertion, 1-to-1 personalized sessions, DRM, dynamic content replacement and, of course, video delivery.

Also at CES 2020, Sidi said that Verizon Media has made great progress in delivering content in 4K with HDR live, with color spacing and multiple HDR tech solutions being the biggest hurdles that have needed to be overcome.

Additionally, as more content companies transition to multi-CDN strategies for streaming, Verizon Media’s multi-CDM solution, Stream Routing, is being regularly fine-tuned, to better shift traffic in real time, protecting Verizon Media customers from slowdowns. “Our customers are asking for that, and a much more dynamic version will be coming out this year,” Sidi said.

And on the dynamic ad insertion front, Verizon Media is hip-deep in exploring a solution that would do away with repetitive ads in streaming content, a problem that persists today for VOD, OTT and sports streaming.

Also at CES 2020

• Technicolor Connected Home announced at the show that it has received ISO 27001 security certification for both cryptographic key management and incident response services, two operational categories considered critical for network service providers (NSPs) offering connected home solutions. Technicolor said the ISO certification accelerates the process of validating compliance with risk controls from NSPs.

“NSPs around the world have become much more demanding about including stringent security requirements in their requests for proposals for next generation CPE,” said Florent Chabaud, VP of business security for Technicolor. “Technology providers that are not ISO 27001 certified must prove their compliance separately with the security auditors of each NSP. This introduces significant time, cost and risk into the process.

“ISO 27001 certification is a strong signal that Technicolor is committed to security and privacy over the long term. This makes it easier for NSPs to verify — through trusted third parties — that compliance is in place. This accelerates the time-to-market of new revenue-generating offerings in a risk-adjusted manner.”

With the number of devices within connected homes exploding, NSPs, application developers and consumer electronics companies are all looking to bring new value-added services to consumers. Hand-in-hand these new opportunities is an elevated security risk to consumers, and NSPs, Technicolor said.

The certification means Technicolor Connected Home met rigorous international standards to ensure confidentiality, integrity and availability for Connected Home Cryptographic Key Production and Distribution Systems and associated Corporate Incident Response Services, the company said.

• For Tim Ruhl, senior product marketing manager for independent video software provider Synamedia, CES 2020 was all about the company’s platforms, and how multiple operators are making the most use of them.

“Our goal here is to emphasize the best of content catalogues, and allow operators to build new pay TV plus OTT business models,” he said. “It’s giving them the opportunity to have a one-stop shop.”

Among the platform news shared in Vegas: E-Vision, a subsidiary of Etisalat Group, announced it has selected the Infinite platform — powered by Synamedia’s video network technologies — for its new, multi-country, multi-tenant OTT service, which is already live in Egypt, will launch soon in Saudi Arabia and will roll out to other markets soon.

E-Vision’s multi-tenant cloud-based service provides operators in the MENA region and Pakistan with a platform to launch and run multi-screen, multi-language OTT services.
The turnkey OTT platform can be easily customized to give each service its own distinct look and feel.

“This is a way for them to drive better value, using our platform,” Ruhl said.

Additionally, Synamedia announced that it has joined Pearl TV in order to Collaborate within the Phoenix Model Market Initiative, the largest industry test to date of ATSC 3.0 and next-gen TV services. The collaborative, single-market effort to plan for and implement a transition to next-generation over-the-air TV broadcasting (via an end-to-end model system) aims to foster industry consensus and drive ecosystem development.