Monday, August 31, 2015

"RDK: The Worldwide Route to TV Everywhere?" (Advanced TV)

Alticast's own Tiaan Schutte, President, EMEA, recently had the opportunity to sit down with Nick Snow of Advanced TV and three other executives to discuss the merits and future of RDK.

To watch the multi-part discussion, click here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Worldwide 4K TV Sales Beat Expectations in 2015

With 4K UHD TVs becoming far more popular than previously forecasted, cable operators are suddenly finding themselves with a growing installed base of “4K-ready” subscribers who are eager to see what the hype is about. According to this article from Broadband Technology Report, “Worldwide 4K TV shipments are expected to grow by 147 percent in 2015, despite an overall two percent fall in TV sales.”

Because 4K TVs are infiltrating the market at a pace faster than anyone could have predicted, it’s crucial that cable operators find the best way to securely deliver this ultra-premium UHD content. While this adds a layer of complexity, Alticast is all too familiar with the ins and outs of end-to-end security, and offers several solutions to the problem.

Industry experts anticipate 4K TV sales to reach 30 million in 2015, promising a bright future for the cable industry and its potential subscribers.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Alticast Demonstrates Cloud Services and Security Solutions at IBC 2015

Alticast, a global partner for the delivery of media entertainment, will demonstrate how video service providers can deliver new cloud-based services and ensure the security of Ultra HD (UHD) content at IBC 2015.  The demonstrations will take place in the Alticast booth (1.F36), September 11-15, at the RAI Exhibition and Conference Centre in Amsterdam.

Key demonstrations at IBC 2015 will include:

·       The AltiPlex™ Cloud Services Platform (CSP), which allows service providers to virtually deliver, operate and manage multiscreen services. In addition, AltiPlex CSP provides:

      Cloud UI, a server-client user interface (UI) rendering engine, enabling the migration of the UI from the STB to the cloud, while delivering an improved user experience (UX) to legacy and new STBs. This innovative solution can deliver multiple UIs to different devices in a household, for example a UI tailored for the children and one for the family. 

Cloud DVR, a cloud-based recording, storage and multiscreen content delivery system. Providing time-shift viewing and live catch up services, this solution allows subscribers to watch anytime, anywhere. It supports multiple business and storage models allowing operators to build the system that meets their needs.

·       The new AltiProtect™ security solution as deployed by CJ Hellovision in Korea to protect its UHD content will be on display, highlighting the full line of AltiProtect CAS/DRM/DTCP-IP solutions. AltiProtect can be remotely installed onto legacy and new STBs as well as other devices with the AltiProtect Download and Exchange Framework.

·       An end-to-end solution comprised of AltiView™ UI, AltiPlatform™ STB software, AltiPlex, CSP and AltiProtect as deployed by a leading Vietnamese Pay TV operator to deliver live and on-demand services to STBs and mobile devices. This integrated solution has been deployed by the operator at several of its subsidiaries and was chosen for its completeness and because of Alticast’s experience in deploying turn-key solutions worldwide.

·       The Alticast Application Framework supports multiple hardware platforms, UIs and user agents to give operators the flexibility to deploy any combination of Android and RDK software on their STBs, allowing for both native and HTML5 applications. This exceptional flexibility enables operators to quickly and easily adapt to changing market needs.

Media and other parties interested in meeting with Alticast executives at IBC 2015 should contact to schedule a time.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

How the Technology and Design Process Is Improving TV Accessibility

As 2016 approaches, many elements of the Communications and Video Accessibility Act, as described in this FCC guide, are closer to being delivered. This includes providing access to 25 million additional viewers in the US, according to CableFax

Our president and CTO, John Carlucci, created a presentation on TV Accessibility that helps bring industry stakeholders up to speed on the design process for TV Accessibility. The presentation also introduces some future technologies that could improve social inclusion. John delivered this presentation during the CableLab's Summer Conference in Keystone, CO on August 3. 

The full presentation can be found on the Alticast website

Monday, August 10, 2015

Talking Guide Extends TV Accessibility in US

from the desk of John Carlucci, President and CTO Americas
As part of the CableLabs Summer Conference, I had the opportunity to participate in a panel on TV Accessibility. A highlight was a live demonstration of the Comcast Xfinity Talking Guide.  The attached video shows a demonstration and Tom Wlodkowski, Comcast VP Accessibility talking about the guide.

The FCC rule requiring a talking guide was enacted late in 2013 based on section 205 of the CVAA passed in 2010 .  The rules cover video navigation device functionality in the following areas: Channel/Program Selection; Display Channel/Program Information; Configuration – Setup; Configuration – CC Control; Configuration – CC Options; Configuration – Video Description Control; Display Configuration Info; Playback Functions; and Input Selection. A summary of the specifics can be found here.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

STBs: “Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated”

Are set-top boxes (STBs) becoming a thing of the past? According to Light Reading's Mari Silbey, they aren't going anywhere. While the news of Cisco selling its beloved set-top unit to Technicolor is stirring up rumors about the death of the set-top business as a whole, we know that by giving operators a presence in the home, STBs offer several advantages.

Consumers may not need a STB for video streaming anymore, but having a special cable box in the home gives cable operators the opportunity to provide a hub for IoT devices and home security applications. With a surge of interest in IoT and what it means for the smart home, cable boxes could be the long-term solution everyone is looking for.

As technology continues to advance, consumers need something in the home that is capable of keeping up with the times. Operators, and consumers, can fortify existing cable boxes with inexpensive dongles that provide new functionality and enable new services. This method will not only save money, but it will ensure that consumers are getting the latest and greatest technology.

Silbey says it best: "Speed, latency and offline storage: these are all reasons why there's still a business in set-tops, even if it's one that demands greater vendor scale and delivers lower per-box margins."

To read her article in full, click here.