AWS Elemental Blog
AWS Elemental Blog
Submitted by Alyssa on February 17, 2017

Hotstar, one of India’s largest premium streaming platforms, has seen more than 175 million downloads since its founding in January 2015. Hotstar offers more than 25,000 hours of sports, episodic television and cinematic content programming in eight languages. Hotstar was named Apple TV’s App of the Year 2016 for India.

“The Indian consumer today is at the front of mobile video. No consumer in any other part of the world has access to better options than the Indian consumer,” said Ajit Mohan, CEO of Hotstar. “Now we are setting our sights on shaping the connected TV experience in India.”

Among Hotstar’s broad range of video programming is premium content, including the world’s biggest sports event in 2016, IPL cricket, and English Premier League football. The popular online video platform also features premier entertainment content, such as Game of Thrones and The Sopranos. In January 2017, Hotstar signed a multi-year subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) deal with Disney India, allowing the company to extend its Hotstar Premium offering to include exclusive content from Disney, Marvel, ABC and more.

“India is the only country in the world where a streaming platform like Hotstar exists, and where the best TV shows from around the world, movie premieres and live sports are available on a single platform,” said Mohan.

To deliver this video content for its OTT service, Hotstar relies on Elemental Live to ensure a premium viewing experience on both mobile networks and WiFi internet connections for its rapidly growing subscriber base.

Users of India’s largest streaming platform have more to look forward to as Hotstar innovates on its award-winning app with new features and more original content in the near future. 

Submitted by Laura on February 9, 2017

Diversity is good for business.

Research data, such as those from McKinsey, Morgan Stanley and IBM, have established that diversity and inclusion have a direct positive correlation to the bottom line. A more diverse and inclusive workforce is also a powerful competitive advantage. It means bigger and better talent pools and a richer marketplace of ideas which, in turn, foster more competitive companies and a stronger industry as a whole.

Seems pretty straightforward.

Yet progress is sluggish toward more diverse and inclusive workplace cultures within the media and entertainment and technology industries.

  • 13% of film and TV directors in the U.S. today represent minority and ethnic groups
  • Just over 28% of all speaking characters are from minority and ethnic groups
  • African American and Hispanic workers together make up just 15.4% of the high-tech workforce, compared to 28.2% of the workforce in all private industries
  • Only 35.7% of high tech workers are women

Understandably, systemic change like this takes time. While it’s heartening to see many companies across the media and entertainment and technology sectors initiating and progressing D&I programs, it’s time for us all to shift into higher gear.

A great way to take meaningful action and galvanize change is to support the 4K 4Charity Fun Run at the 2017 NAB Show. I am excited to share with you that, starting with the 2017 NAB Show, all 4K 4Charity Fun Run Series proceeds will go to organizations focused on diversity and inclusion!

Now a tradition at the NAB Show and IBC, the run was founded three years ago to provide a healthy, fun way to give back amidst the busy trade show environment. To date, these events raised more than $400,000 (USD) in gross proceeds for worthy charities.

At the 2017 NAB Show, generous donations from sponsors and individual registrants will benefit Mercy Corps, which works with the most vulnerable women and adolescents in crises, providing safe places, education opportunities, job skills training and community engagement projects to help them build a strong tomorrow. 4K 4Charity proceeds will also be shared with Women Who Code, which is dedicated to inspiring women to pursue and excel in technology careers and to help them become leaders and role models in the tech industry.

Remember: the 4K 4Charity Fun Run stands apart from similar events in that 100% of individual registrant donations are forwarded to the designated beneficiaries.

Together, we can accelerate efforts across the media and entertainment and technology industries to foster truly inclusive cultures built on representation, engagement and equal opportunity. I urge you to take action today by signing up for the 4K 4Charity Fun Run at the 2017 NAB Show. Think about accelerating the pace of support by encouraging your co-workers and colleagues to do the same through a fun corporate team or challenge. Maybe even check in with your company’s community investment, D&I and/or foundation to see about a sponsorship and corporate match gifts – and then get in touch with Kate Incerto, 4K 4Charity Fun Run manager.

Whatever your course of action, please give increased diversity and inclusion a run at the 2017 NAB Show!

Submitted by Alyssa on February 8, 2017

Assuring a consistent, top-quality user experience is front of mind for Panama’s Cable Onda, whether that is on next-generation set-top boxes, computers, mobile devices or TVs. A new unified headend is driving this TV everywhere consistency, feeding all Cable Onda video-on-demand (VOD) and live streaming services. Elemental software-defined video solutions are at the core of the new headend, helping Cable Onda realize its objective to enrich its service portfolio and delight users.

With more than 35 years in service, Cable Onda is among the largest service providers in Panama, offering television, internet and telephony services. With a heritage of technology and industry innovation, Cable Onda is using the Elemental-powered unified headend to support its new over-the-top (OTT) and mobile content VOD and live streaming delivery services. Cable Onda will deliver next-generation experiences for subscribers across multiple networks and connected screens.

“Elemental could demonstrate that it had already delivered a consistent, high quality experience across platforms,” said Michael Maduro, Vice President of Strategic Projects for Cable Onda. “They understood what we needed, the architecture we had planned, and how to integrate with our other technology platforms.”

“Our new headend will deliver a consistent experience to the new set-top boxes on our existing HFC network and for OTT and mobile services,” Maduro added. “That makes us more attractive to audiences, which will allow us to maintain and grow our market share. Equally important, the new headend will be easier to manage and more cost-effective to operate – a win-win.”

Cable Onda is integrating the system in-house with the support of Elemental engineers. It has chosen to use dedicated Elemental Live appliances with Statistical Multiplexing capabilities, which are HEVC compliant, so the company can add 4K Ultra HD services when ready. Additionally, Cable Onda is using Elemental Server and Elemental Conductor.

In the first phase launch Cable Onda will add new services such as seamless access to VOD services and online services like time-shifting and networked PVR.