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Viewpoint: The Evolving Face of Media Production and Management

In its essence, a Media Management system is not built to generate revenue for organisations. The implementation of one can, however, streamline workflows and free-up time for revenue-generating activities. Of course, every organisation is different and so that means what they need from a solution will also be drastically different. As long as video content is being produced (and it is doing so at an unprecedented rate), it will require organisation and management. A media management system remains the best way to do this.

In today’s modern media environment, these solutions must, however, evolve to remain relevant. The proliferation of OTT means more metadata will need to be managed as well as an increased onus on rights management. It’s become clear over the last decade or so that video is, without a doubt, the primary data type of our generation. Organisations are well aware of this and if they aren’t, they soon will be. Non-traditional video producers use the medium to give their organisation a competitive edge, and this is true of most markets and sectors. This signifies a fundamental change in the way customers are using media management solutions.

Going Hybrid

Arguably as a reaction to the changing face of media production, cloud solutions have been gaining traction. Although some are still wary of the benefits of moving to the cloud, it has become particularly popular for those seeking flexibility. Nowadays, this applies both to corporate video producers handling several file formats at a time, as well as traditional broadcasters needing to deliver linear content as well as OTT. This is where a solution known as hybrid-cloud comes into play, offering the best of both worlds and significantly altering the way organisations approach the management of content in a number of ways.

One of the initial benefits of cloud, or hybrid cloud, based systems is that they can be rolled out for use almost immediately without the need to spend days on installation. By their very nature, cloud solutions do not require overwhelming IT infrastructures meaning organisations no longer need to become IT companies to implement a media management system!

Similarly, taking advantage of the cloud means that an organisation’s storage capacity is no longer necessarily dependent on how many racks of hardware they can house. This all results in a particularly cost-effective and scalable solution able to accommodate both the smallest of content producers, and the largest. Users can begin with a compact system in the cloud, building upwards on-demand, without disruptive infrastructure changes.

Admittedly, high-speed cloud storage can be expensive, but the beauty of hybrid cloud is that content can be added and removed at any point, only being stored in the cloud when needed and removed when not. This will likely appeal to those concerned about security, as sensitive content does not need to reside in the cloud long term, and can be returned to on-premise storage as and when. 

Cantemo’s iconik leverages the benefits of hybrid-cloud technology so users can focus more on their core business.

Cantemo’s iconik leverages the benefits of hybrid-cloud technology so users can focus more on their core business.

Perhaps the most appealing feature of cloud and hybrid cloud management systems is the increased capability for collaboration with global teams or clients. In fact, an important aspect of our own hybrid-cloud solution, Cantemo  Iconik (iconik), is its ability to aggregate media into one platform. The sharing of files is done more or less automatically within iconik, which gathers media from customer offices and devices into one easily searchable interface. With so many distinct solutions on the market, it’s important to emphasise the fluidity of hybrid-cloud environments like iconik, particularly when differentiating between non-native static systems often referred to as ‘cloud-ready’.

Native Cloud vs. Cloud Ready

There does seem to be some confusion as to the difference between a cloud-ready system and a cloud-native solution built specifically for the cloud environment. The former is usually a standard media asset management solution simply virtualised and placed into the cloud. These virtualised solutions cannot take full advantage of the elasticity provided by a truly cloud-based solution, unlike those consisting of a native cloud layer built upon a standard on-premise system.

Moving towards a wholly cloud-based media management solution may not be suitable for every organisation. As we know, no two content providers are alike these days. But a hybrid approach could be an ideal arrangement, particularly for those seeking flexible and scalable solutions as video becomes less and less the remit of broadcasters alone. Cloud-based solutions allow the customer to focus more on the core business, increasing productivity and ultimately revenue. 

Tim Child, CCO and co-founder, Cantemo.

Tim Child, CCO and co-founder, Cantemo.

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