Kaltura, whose TV Platform can support cloud TV services to millions of viewers across all devices, announced an expanded relationship with Vodafone in September, pointing to the advantages of leveraging common infrastructure. At the same time, it demonstrated new data-driven capabilities in its Cloud TV platform as signs of the dawn of a more “cognitive” era in television.
The Kaltura Cloud TV platform is widely deployed among broadcasters going direct-to-consumer and service providers that are transforming their video delivery systems. The modular video platform serves more than 50 million global users.
Kaltura announced that it is supporting the launch of Vodafone TV in Greece, Romania and Portugal. Kaltura previously supported the launch of Vodafone TV service in Italy in 2017, and Spain in 2015. The global telecom conglomerate is one of Kaltura’s largest Cloud TV customers.
Vodafone TV is a multi-country, operator-grade service that uses a common cloud-based platform. Rolling out services across a mix of legacy and new sites, Vodafone benefits from a flexible, single infrastructure. “The Kaltura platform supports both pure-play OTT and OTT/Pay TV hybrid models, enabling Vodafone to meet consumers’ requirements in each market with unified infrastructure, thereby yielding significant time and cost efficiencies,” said Tal Weinblum, Kaltura Senior Director of Product Marketing.
Kaltura has also deepened its relationship with Beeline TV with a deployment in Kazakhstan, announced in September. Kaltura was part of Beeline TV’s Russia launch in 2018. Beeline TV is a brand of Amsterdam-based Veon (formerly VimpleCom.)
In addition to extending its work with customers, Kaltura has been evolving its product. Last year, at IBC 2018, Kaltura unveiled its Targeted TV initiative, which aimed to augment its Cloud TV platform through AI and machine learning (ML). In April 2019, it expanded that initiative in partnerships with TV data consulting company Dativa and multiscreen-focused, software engineering firm 3SS.
“The collaboration with Dativa and 3SS are great examples of how Kaltura has started integrating data and other important elements of service management and user experience with our platform,” said Weinblum. “We believe these collaborations are essential for the era of Cognitive TV to be realised, and we are committed to being early movers in this area.”
One of the building blocks of this evolving platform is the high volume of API calls – more than 2 billion – that cross Kaltura’s Cloud TV platform daily. Kaltura uses AI and ML techniques to analyse these calls and other sources of data and create user segments that operators can then target with offers, content and advertising.
As part of Kaltura’s Cognitive TV demo at IBC 2019, the company showcased how this convergence of cloud TV and AI capabilities impacts both user experience and revenue generation. “Users will be able to get advertising that is aware of context and time,” said Weinblum, “while TV service providers will boost ad revenues by adjusting their pre-defined advertising payload to adaptive advertising.”
Weinblum said the idea is to enable service providers to select in real-time “the most appropriate ad format, based on user, content, context and actual engagement.”