TV technology company Conax is to launch a new partner programme at IBC in September as part of the company’s new strategic focus on developing overall solutions for customers including middleware, search and recommendation tools and video-on-demand services. As part of its new strategic focus on integrated solutions, Conax has also split its Contego conditional access product set into four separate offerings.
Speaking at a Telenor press event in Oslo yesterday, Conax CEO Morten Solbakken said that Conax also planned to target multi-device over-the-top delivery opportunities over the coming year. He said that Conax was increasingly developing solutions with partners rather than just selling smartcards, citing the delivery of a new platform to Mexico’s Cablmas, in partnership with Poland-based middleware provider Cubiware, as an example.
“Having preferred and strategic partners will enable us to move faster into new markets,” said executive vice-president of products and partners Tom Jahr, speaking at the same event. He said Conax was in discussion with a couple of new potential partners with a view to delivering integrated offerings to customers.
On the product side, Conax’s Contego system has been split into four dedicated versions – Lite, Broadcast, Plus and Unite, aimed at different types of operators with different needs. Contego Unite, which supports Microsoft PlayReady DRM, is designed as a universal hub for hybrid broadcast-broadband and OTT operators targeting multiple devices. Unite’s content hub will decide which content can be viewed on which screen, according to Jahr. He said Unite can support multiple DRMs.
The company is accelerating its product launch roadmap. This year, Contego Unite will offer advanced VOD solutions, supporting OTT VOD delivery for satellite broadcasters as well as the ability to watch live TV on multiple devices. On the client side, Conax will launch an integrated CI Plus module with an integrated card.
Finally, on the solutions side, the company will offer a full integrated OTT solution comprising an advanced user interface on set-top or laptop, allowing secondary devices to be used as companion devices for the TV. The solution will be launced in partnership with Sweden-based content management system provider MPS Broadband and Cubiware.
Conax is also offering a solution to enable free-to-air TV providers to migrate easily to pay services, and has also developed a cloud-based software CA solution for some customers.
Next year, Conax will develop a network DVR system, as well as extending Conax Playready to Android and WP8 devices. Further down the line, it will also add MPEG DASH support and advanced reporting and messaging to Contego’s back-end. In 2014-15 the company will also launch a next-generation Conax security product.
About 30% of Conax’s existing customer base is digitised, giving significant room for growth going forwards, according to Solbakken.