April 18, 2016

New software-based HTTP-to-UDP Gateway helps cable operator maximize investment in next-gen infrastructure

Imagine Communications, empowering the media and entertainment industry through transformative innovation, today introduced the Selenio™ Video Delivery Edge (VDE), an HTTP-to-User Datagram Protocol (UDP) gateway that creates the opportunity for video service providers to reduce costs and the complexity of their networks by seamlessly bridging next-generation and legacy video delivery infrastructures. Selenio VDE is designed to enable cable operators and other content distributors to improve the efficiency, performance and revenue-generating potential of video delivery and ad insertion infrastructures, while paving the way for the transition of operations to a fully virtualized environment based on generic computing and networking resources.

To accommodate shifting video consumption patterns, PayTV operators are building out HTTP-based networks that use Adaptive Bitrate (ABR) technology to stream video programing and commercials to Internet connected devices, including smartphones, tablets, PC and connected TVs. These networks often run in parallel to legacy networks that use Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM) technology to deliver programming to subscribers through set-top boxes. Selenio VDE enables distributors to use the same HTTP-based core infrastructure to support both sets of customer devices, enabling ABR streaming and software-based dynamic ad insertion capabilities to deliver signals to set-top boxes using the traditional QAM-based RF transmission infrastructure.

In addition to helping to accelerate the consolidation of multiple networks into a single, next-gen infrastructure, the deployment of Selenio VDE makes it possible for cable operators to accelerate the deployment of a next-generation ad insertion platform, enabling the retirement of hardware-dependent ad insertion and video delivery equipment.

“Imagine Communications is providing today’s video service providers with a steppingstone toward a software-based, fully virtualized infrastructure that will provide the agility, flexibility and efficiency to deliver the digital services that today’s consumers increasingly crave,” said Imagine Communications CTO Steve Reynolds. “This breakthrough technology is a catalyst for accelerating additional infrastructure upgrades that will enable our customers to dramatically elevate the subscriber experience by improving video quality and delivering a more personalized video service.”

Selenio VDE leverages technology from across Imagine Communications’ Networking and Cloud solutions portfolio, including the company’s fully virtualized dynamic ad insertion ecosystem. The software-based gateway works by allowing cable operators to leverage recent investments in HTTP video and ad delivery infrastructure to feed linear programming and ads to existing STBs, which may number in the millions. By bypassing legacy infrastructure, Selenio VDE provides the following potential benefits:

  • Accelerates the consolidation of multiple infrastructures into a single, HTTP-based service delivery network, eliminating the cost and operational burden of maintaining separate networks
  • Enables service providers to focus new investments on next-generation infrastructure, while leveraging existing investments in QAM-based subscriber devices
  • Provides a path to deployment of next-generation ad insertion infrastructure, allowing the use of manifest-based ad insertion instead of legacy MPEG-2/4 ad splicing hardware
  • Sharpens ad-targeting capabilities and provides operators with the flexibility to quickly modify, change and move ads and channel lineups
  • Serves as a catalyst for the migration to an IP-based, datacenter environment based on commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment

The replacement of hardware-dependent systems with a software-based ad insertion ecosystem provides unprecedented deployment flexibility. The software-based nature of Selenio VDE empowers cable operators, which may maintains hundreds of head-ends and thousands of ad zones, to optimize efficiency by locating ad insertion functionality anywhere in their networks. Selenio VDE is compatible with both centralized and edge-based deployment models and executes across a broad range of generic computing resources.

Selenio VDE is also capable of helping broadcasters and service providers reduce costs by enabling the replacement of expensive satellite and terrestrial links that deliver compressed video to service providers, as well as links between facilities. Selenio VDE allows operators to replace multicast delivery networks with Internet-based, HTTP links that are more reliable, consume less bandwidth and are less-expensive to operate.

Selenio VDE enables the largest cable operators in the world to extract significant costs from their operations by replacing proprietary, purpose-build ad insertion and video delivery infrastructure with state-of-the art solutions that run entirely in software,” said Brick Eksten, Chief Product Officer, Imagine Communications. “With the introduction of Selenio VDE, we are empowering video service providers with the potential to optimize the efficiency and performance of their networks with groundbreaking innovation in video delivery technologies.”

Imagine Communications is providing a preview of Selenio VDE at the NAB Show 2016 (Booth N2502) in Las Vegas, NV. For additional information about Imagine Communications’ Networking and Cloud solutions, visit www.imaginecommunications.com.


About Imagine Communications
Imagine Communications empowers the media and entertainment industry through transformative innovation. Broadcasters, networks, video service providers and enterprises around the world rely on our optimized, future-proof, multiscreen video and revenue enablement solutions every day to support their mission-critical operations. Today, nearly half of the world’s video channels traverse our products, and our software solutions drive close to a third of global ad revenue. Through continuous innovation we are delivering the most advanced IP, cloud-enabled, software-defined network and workflow solutions in the industry. Visit www.imaginecommunications.com for more information, and follow us on Twitter @imagine_comms.

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portatif of Steve Reynolds


Steve Reynolds

Steve Reynolds is President of Imagine Communications, a global leader in multiscreen video and ad management solutions that broadcasters, networks, video service providers and enterprises around the world rely on to support their mission-critical operations.

Steve brings 25 years of technology leadership in the video industry to Imagine Communications. He has served as the CTO at Imagine Communications and Harris Broadcast, Senior Vice President of Premises Technology at Comcast, Senior Vice President of Technology at OpenTV, and CTO at Intellocity USA.

Steve earned a MS in Computer Engineering from Widener University and BS in Computer Science from West Chester University. As the Chairman of the AIMS Alliance and a member of SMPTE and SCTE, he has participated in numerous standards-making bodies in the cable and digital video industries. Steve also holds over 40 patents relating to digital video, content security, interactive television and digital devices.