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From Microsoft Azure to everyone attending IBC Show 2018 – Welkom in Amsterdam!

Posted on September 13, 2018

General Manager, Azure Storage & Azure Stack

Media and entertainment industry conferences are by far some of my favorites. Creativity, disruption, opportunity, and technology – particularly cloud, edge, and AI – are everywhere. It’s been exciting to see those things come together at NAB 2018, SIGGRAPH, and now IBC Show 2018. Together with teams from across Microsoft, I’m looking forward to IBC Show and the chance to learn, collaborate, and advance the state of this dynamic industry.

At this year’s IBC we’re excited to announce the general availability of Video Indexer, our advanced metadata extraction service. Announced as public preview earlier this year, Video Indexer provides a rich set of cross-channel (audio, speech, and visual) learning models. Check out Sudheer’s blog for more information on all the new capabilities including emotion detection, topic inferencing, and improvements to the ever-popular celebrity recognition model that recognizes over one million faces.

Insights - 4.6

Video Indexer is just one of the ways Azure is helping customers like Endemol Shine, Multichoice, RTL, and Ericsson with their content needs. At IBC 2018, our teams are excited to share new ways that Azure, together with solutions from our partners, can address common media workflow challenges.

How? Well, read on…

More visual effects and animations mean you need to render more, faster than ever before

With Azure you can burst your render jobs from on-premises to the cloud, more easily and securely than you may have thought. Come see a demonstration of how to use Azure Batch, Avere vFXT for Azure (now in public preview), and your favorite rendering applications. We’ll be using Autodesk Maya to accelerate your productions using cloud computing. You can start running jobs right away with our pre-built images, or bring your own custom VM boot images. We’ll take care of the complexities of licensing and there is no need to move your data. Render more with Azure.

Accelerated production schedules with remote contributions to produce more cost effective, scalable cloud workflows

Together with Dejero, Avid, Haivision, Hiscale, Make.TV, and Signiant we’re showcasing how to make “live production in the cloud” a reality. This demonstration uses a live video stream from the field which is sent to Microsoft Azure by a Dejero EnGo mobile transmitter. Dejero dynamically receives the stream in Azure, transcodes it, and delivers it to Make.TV’s Live Video Cloud, which is used to curate and route the content to any number of destinations from within the Avid MediaCentral Cloud UX. Hiscale’s cloud-based transcoding solution enables live recording into customers’ editing and asset management environments where high- and low-resolution files can be stored in Avid NEXIS. For file-based workflows, Signiant’s technology is used to accelerate ingest. Then, HiScale transcodes the files and stores the assets and metadata in Avid’s Interplay MAM. Learn more about live production in the cloud.

Ever-growing content libraries mean you need more intelligent content management

Our customers consistently tell us they want faster, better ways to store, index, manage, and unlock the value of their content libraries. At IBC we’ll demonstrate how Video Indexer allows you to easily extract metadata, such as emotion and topics, from audio and video files. Then we will show you how to access those assets, and the metadata, through our updated portal experience, API, or through third-party asset managers, including Avid, Dalet, and eMAM. This ensure that those deep insights are available right where editors and production crews need and expect them. You can also surface insights in your own custom apps through a new embeddable insights pane or our API. Video Indexer’s models are customizable and extensible, so they can evolve as your needs do.

Video Indexer leverages the Azure Storage platform, which provides cost effective and simple ways to ingest petabytes of content using our own client tools, as well as third-party file transfer accelerators over the Internet or a private ExpressRoute connection. Where offline transfer is faster or cheaper, we have a range of Data Box solutions to handle anything from single-drive to multi-PB bulk transfers. Our offline media import partners are ready to assist with anything from reels of analog video to thousands of LTO tapes. Azure Storage is designed to offer between eleven and sixteen 9s of durability, depending on the replication option you choose. At IBC we’re showing off lifecycle management policies (in preview), which let you control retention periods and automatic tiering between hot, cool, and archive tiers so that your data is always protected and stored in the most cost-effective way.

Fans around the world want to see their favorite event in ever increasing detail, live

At IBC we’re showing how Azure Media Services can help deliver UHD/4K HLG streams from the cloud.  First, Media Excel’s HERO™on-premises encoders push an UHD/4K HEVC contribution feed over the open Internet using the open source low latency streaming protocol, SRT. This feed is received by Media Excel software encoders running in Azure, transcoded into a multiple bitrate HEVC 60 fps streams, and sent to Azure Media Services for dynamic packaging (DASH/HLS with CMAF) and encryption (PlayReady/Widevine/Fairplay). It’s then ready for delivery using Azure CDN or a CDN of your choice.

MultiChoice, a leading provider of sports, movies, series, and general entertainment channels to over 12 million subscribers in Sub-Saharan Africa (through its DStv services), recently completed a pilot using a similar solution to deliver the first UHD live streaming event in South Africa. They found that Microsoft Azure delivered on the promise of a 3rd party managed cloud solution with real-world effectiveness.

Media solutions from our broad partner ecosystem

Whatever your media challenges, our partners are ready to help with solutions, planning, content creation, management, and monetization. You can learn more about these solutions, and the new capabilities in Video Indexer, in Sudheer’s blog.

The future is cloudy, but bright

Enabling the scenarios above is another step towards the not too distant future where cloud, edge, and AI technologies are put to work for you. For a sneak peek into that future check out Cloud Champions, brought you by Microsoft Azure and our partners.

That’s a wrap

If you’re attending IBC Show 2018 please stop by our booth at Hall 1, Booth #C27 to:

  • Chat with product team representatives from Azure Media Services, Azure Storage, Avere, Azure HPC, Cognitive Services, and  Microsoft Skype for Broadcast.
  • Visit with partners from Avid, GreyMeta, Forbidden, Live Arena, Make.TV, Ooyala, Prime Focus Technologies, Teradici, Streaming Buzz, uCast, and Wowza.
  • See some great customer, partner, and product team presentations. To learn more, see the detailed schedule for Microsoft at IBC 2018.

Thanks for reading and have a great show!

Tad