Arqiva, the UK communications infrastructure and media services company, has announced the extension of its portfolio of real-time connectivity options for occasional events and full-time channels. Available to customers from April, Virtual Connect will deliver a secure and fully managed gateway into and out of the cloud for broadcasters and content owners looking to embrace new models of real-time content contribution, processing and distribution.
Designed to help customers leverage the scalability, agility and cost-savings offered by the cloud, the solution – which operates through Amazon Web Services (AWS) – will allow rights-holders and broadcasters to deliver scheduled linear channels and live events around the world. As broadcasters increasingly demand commercial flexibility in their hunt for new audiences, the solution will offer the ability to perform fast-start trials in new geographies, rapidly delivering services such as live sports, e-sports and music events, and see volume distribution models become a reality.
With AWS acting as a virtual Point of Presence (PoP), Virtual Connect will also allow existing content partners with linear channels and event distribution on the Arqiva fibre network (Arqnet) to seamlessly move feeds to the cloud for processing or pick up real-time content from the cloud and feed it back into Arqnet. As video workflows move off dedicated hardware, Virtual Connect will mean content providers can take advantage of the new generation of virtual playout and multiplexing services.
Chris Alner at Arqiva, said: “We are excited to bring the latest addition to our virtualised media management services portfolio to market in April, offering a resilient solution to help our customers stay ahead in what is an immensely competitive and challenging environment. Within the sports industry in particular, audiences are consuming content in increasingly diversified ways – from live linear coverage to video on-demand – so we are looking forward to discussing it with sports broadcasters at this year’s SportsPro OTT USA.
“Virtual Connect will allow our customers in sports broadcasting and beyond to reach new audiences’ with the global reach of AWS and deliver broadcast-quality real-time content across the world – all with a 24/7 service wrap from Arqiva to ensure availability, redundancy and quality. And that is a key distinction. As well as offering this compelling new solution, we want to give our customers the peace of mind that Arqiva will manage the complexities of deployment, management and security so they don’t have to,” Alner added.