As OTT growth gains pace and traditional linear TV declines the importance of flexible architecture increases, writes M2A Media Solutions Architect Valentijn Siebrands.

Not too long ago OTT solutions were mainly developed in-house by a separate team or serviced by a turn-key end-to-end vendor.

Valentijn Siebrands

Valentijn Siebrands

In 2018, it is paramount that any future OTT business case demands finer control over CAPEX and OPEX dynamics. Finer control can only be delivered by adopting another growth strategy usually referred to as ‘best of breed’.

The rise of public cloud, luckily, supports this process, but it also brings challenges when it comes to delivering broadcast grade live services. Cloud and live OTT demand a different and often more fluid approach, which can be a struggle even for the cloud giants themselves; just look at the Amazon US Open debacle or the World Cup coverage problems experienced by Optus in Australia.

Getting it right depends on the willingness to integrate multiple best of breed vendors into one flexible, modular, more efficient solution. It is this process that M2A Media facilitates and helps to deliver globally.

Modularity together with flexibility is key to the survival of any OTT business case. The industry is changing rapidly and monetisation strategies will soon enable FTA OTT services all over the world.

But these freemium models only survive when you get it right. Features like personalised ad-insertion and content recommendation combined with business or consumer intelligence will enable this future, but only a cost effective hands-on approach delivers black figures and a long term sustainable model.

All too often the old IT paradigms are used to deliver this new freemium OTT world. However, success requires cloud knowledge and technical wisdom when it comes to integration and delivering economical flexibility.

In practical terms, fail-quick learn-fast means low upfront investment, use of cloud, integration in-house, vendor flexibility and no long running contracts. Successful OTT transformation should be managed like a Premier League football team: coach your organisation like a sports pro team and put the emphasis on best of breed players and integrated team play.

Valentijn Siebrands is Solutions Architect at M2A Media

IBC2018 M2A Media is exhibiting at IBC2018 on Stand 14.H04.