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By Jacques Le Mancq, President & CEO, Broadpeak
With the advent of tablets, smartphones, and other portable digital devices, coupled with a plethora of online video services like Netflix, YouTube, and Hulu, there’s no denying that the way viewers “watch TV” has changed. Internet video is evolving, and with that growth comes an increasing need for solutions that deliver video to online viewers in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Both network service providers (NSPs) and operators who enable connectivity (cable companies, satellite providers) are continually looking for new revenue streams and more efficient ways to distribute video without burning a hole in their pockets.
To their advantage, where and how the content originates hasn’t changed much, despite the evolving landscape. However, service providers and operators are often at the mercy of major content delivery network (CDN) providers — who are the ones tasked with delivering the video. These large CDNs offer an easy entrance onto the Internet for a provider’s content and a relatively simple method of monitoring proof of delivery and signal presence. But the quality of the signal being delivered is nearly impossible to track. As high-definition viewing becomes more prevalent in the home — coupled with the growing amount of content being consumed by viewers — it’s more important than ever for providers and operators to deliver the highest level of quality possible to the viewer, and third party CDNs don’t provide that level of peace of mind. Since subscribers are linked to operators—who own the last mile—CDNs simply can’t guarantee that level of quality.
Taking the Wholesale Road
There is no denying the unique advantages in accessing third-party CDNs. These companies bring many years of experience to the relationship, and many also manage international content distribution for an operator whose network is limited by its geographical footprint. But to level the playing field, there are now competitive operator solutions being offered that give service providers and operators the tools they need to process and manage their assets and bandwidth like never before. One benefit of this type of CDN solution is that it provides a direct relationship between the content provider and the operator. This allows the network owner to accurately monitor the amount of bandwidth being used, helping to eliminate network congestion. This type of CDN solution also allows an operator to lease space on its own network directly to the content provider, or even have resellers lease it for them (a second potential new source of revenue), and manage that space, essentially dissolving the middle-man in the delivery chain. This enables online video distributors, such as Netflix, to more closely manage the delivery of their content and optimize the quality of service for their subscribers.
A Fair Revenue Share For Everyone
Broadpeak’s wholesale CDN solutions are extensions of Broadpeak’s operator CDN solutions, and give operators a powerful platform to deploy their own CDNs and the ability to more closely govern how, when, and by whom the infrastructures they so carefully develop and maintain are used. The objective for the wholesale CDN solution is to guarantee fair revenue share to all the players involved in the delivery of video and to empower operators and content providers with a choice in how content is being delivered.
A wholesale CDN solution delivers a win-win situation for all parties involved. It provides a huge benefit to sub-NSPs because they do not have the resources to broaden their infrastructure on their own, and they often pay high transit costs to main network service providers. Broadpeak’s CDN solution generates additional revenue streams for the operator creating the wholesale opportunity because they no longer have to involve the middle man in the equation.