Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Laser technique for faster Internet. It is simple!

Sometimes simple is all it takes. Many of us heard about phase cancellation during our physics classes. Think of two ocean waves that overlap to cancel each other out.  A new noise reduction technique for laser optics uses a similar approach sending two signals down the fiber path and subtracting them to remove common noise when they arrive at the receiver.

With growing consumer appetite for bandwidth rich video and other services, this technique could help with optical lines. Optical lines may one day reach all the way to your home.

The technologists applying the technique remark on the simplicity:

"At the receiver, if you superimpose the two waves, then all the distortions will magically cancel each other out, so you obtain the original signal back,” Liu told the BBC. “This concept, looking back, is quite easy to understand, but surprisingly, nobody did this before.” Venture Beat has more.

Monday, May 20, 2013

H.265 and EyeIO

With IP becoming the focus for next-generation cable STBs, how will we optimize bandwidth? The article below caught my attention about the technology of Eyeio (used by Netflix) vs. the advancement of H.265 (HEVC). The first hurdle in using H.265 is encoding existing libraries into this format so you can take advantage of the new footprint. The article contends that the technology form EyeIO already gives you both the quality of H.265 and the bandwidth savings, however there is no discussion of the business model. For H.265, there is the additional hurdle of codecs for decoding H.265 on target devices, however, if you see the plethora of announcements on the H.265 Wiki page, H.265 encoders and decoders are quickly beginning to proliferate.

Ironically the attached press release tells about the same story, but at the bottom of the press release in "About EyeiIO" they suggest breakthrough technology in both H.264 and H.265, which might suggest even greater bandwidth optimization in the future using H.265 and EyeIO technology together.

...and let's not forget about Google and it's desire to make VP8 the defacto (open source) video codec standard. There's a race going on to optimize bandwidth to serve the veracious appetite for video consumption. Many good algorithms are rising to the challenge, it will be interesting to see what rises to the top.


For more technical insight into the development of H.265 see:

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Why I hate the phrase "over-the-top" (OTT)?

I shiver when I hear folks use the phrase over-the-top. Why you ask?

Simply because the definition hinges on content not coming from the cable operator. In effect, it refers to a business model however, it is often used to refer to a service and underlying technology for delivering a video experience to devices over IP.

In the future, all video will be delivered over IP whether it is coming from a cable operator or third party. At some point it is indistinguishable to the user.

Maybe the operators need a new phrase over-the-toping-ourselves (Otto). But what about the case where the cable operator is going over a telco network to deliver video - Over-the-toping-of-the-other-guy (ottotog) :)

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Shift to All-IP: Migrating from Legacy Systems with HTML5

Join us for a complimentary webinar hosted by 
CED Magazine and sponsored by Alticast.

Date: May 16, 2013
Time: 11:00am ET, 10:00am CT, 8:00am PT

Duration: 60 min

  • What devices will make up the future household ecosystem?
  • What new services will this allow operators to add to their current offerings?
  • What components are needed to deliver a complete solution?
  • How to evaluate software needs including RDK?
  • What are the options for the user experience; HTML5, native, etc.?
  • How are content protection schemes changing to cover delivery to multiple devices?
  • What can virtualization in the cloud provide in an IP solution?

Many cable operators are exploring their next generation solutions looking towards a complete change to an all-IP system. The challenges start from the bottom up with the selection of target STB hardware, all the way to implementing the User Experience of the future. Decisions include:

Takeaways- reflections and analysis on available system components and insight into real-world experience deploying against these technologies

Steven Reynolds
Senior Vice President – Premises Technology
Comcast Cable


John Callahan

Independent Consultant
Cable Industry Leader

Nick Nielsen

Principal Architect, Converged Technology Group 
Time Warner Cable

John Carlucci
Chief Technology Officer 
Alticast US


Mike Robuck

Senior Editor 

To register, just click on the link below to be redirected to the CED site.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Sit Forward and Enjoy

Welcome to TV Ready, a forum sponsored by Alticast covering industry news, expertise, and trends about television technology.  Media delivery, in particular video, has been on a fast moving and changing path, especially with the advent of high bandwidth pipes that allow consumption in a multitude of ways on a variety of devices. Whether cable, satellite, broadcast, or IP delivered, this forum will follow trends about the delivery and consumption of media content. A few Alticast staff members will provide commentary on a variety of topics and will invite other industry gurus to contribute as well, as we unravel the ideas and underpinnings of the future of video.

Contributors from left to right:  SY Lee, Melissa Baltz, Mike Fallon, John Carlucci, Susan Crouse
So, sit forward and enjoy!