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ActiveVideo unveils enhanced CloudTV, names new customers

ActiveVideo has enhanced its CloudTV platform to enable service providers to deliver TV to any connected device as an application and has announced a raft of major customers.

The CloudTV H5 platform can, according to ActiveVideo, now support scaleable deployments effectively through the use of four major innovations.

These include render layers, enabling complex UIs and animation to be rendered more smoothly and to reduce required bandwidth up to 50%; smart multiplexing, increasing the number of CloudTV sessions delivered across an existing cable QAM network, resulting in 25% throughput improvement, or in an IP network benefiting from adaptive bit rate technology; and dual-stream rendering, allowing the bandwidth-efficient delivery of partial-screen user interfaces that are controlled from the cloud but rendered locally on devices, resulting in enhanced on-screen experiences without taxing the network.

A fourth innovation, support for a family of thin clients based on an ultra-light code base, works with the CloudTV platform to deliver consistent user experiences on any connected device, according to the company. Dubbed CloudTV Nano, CloudTV Nano Lite and CloudTV Nanoware, the clients are designed to meet a variety of customer deployment strategies supporting managed and unmanaged devices with UI-in-the-cloud capabilities, according to the company.

ActiveVideo, whose technology is already used to support video-on-demand services delivered to legacy set-top boxes from Ziggo in the Netherlands, has also announced three major new customers: US cable operators Charter Communications and Cablevision, and Japanese group Sumitomo.

“These four enhancements provide scale, network scale device reach,” said Murali Nemani, senior vice-president and chief marketing officer, ActiveVideo. He said that ActiveVideo’s technology could enable operators to deliver services “straight from the cloud and free the UI from the device dependency”.

“Decoupling the UI from device dependency creates a whole new set of opportunities,” said Nemani. “You can deliver the most progressive UIs from the cloud just like a video channel to very lightweight devices and maybe straight to the connected TV. The implication for the total cost of ownership is massive.”

Nemani cited a study by ACG Research that found ActiveVideo’s CloudTV produced a saving of 83% in total cost of ownership in five years over a set-top box-based strategy.

Nemani said ActiveVideo would support Charter Communications migrate its UI into the cloud and eliminate its dependency on set-top boxes. He said the operator planned to roll out market trials and then roll out nationally.

Cablevision will use ActiveVideo’s platform to deliver applications around content ranging from branded ad channels to games platforms on the TV, while Sumitomo will deploy the technology with JCOM, in which it is a 50% stakeholder.