The cloud promises flexibility but are concerns about price a barrier to adoption?

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With the growing understanding that asset and workflow management can provide the umbrella under which all media services lie, is this the killer app? Is asset management in the cloud a good plan?

“The important thing is cloud computing – there is little advantage in the cloud as a storage platform,” said Paul Wilkins, Director of Solutions and Marketing at TMD. “What it does do is give you elasticity, the ability to spin up a service.

Paul wilkins

Paul Wilkins

“You might have one instance of a transcode manager running on premises, but suddenly you need four. It is that elasticity, the idea of the platform as a service, that cloud offers.”

Jay Batista, General Manager in America for Tedial, agreed with Wilkins that there are economic concerns about cloud storage. “All operators need to keep an eye on costs,” he said. “Public cloud services can be expensive, especially when removing media from storage archives.”

Jay batista

Jay Batista

He extended the argument on services in the cloud.

“It provides a way to outsource the IT infrastructure and extend software tools. If you are a new company with widely varying requirements such as automated quality control, transcoding, watermarking, audio and subtitle management and delivery services, then a flexible, pay-as-you-go cloud service may provide the underpinning for a growing operation.”

Given the effectively infinite processing power available in the cloud, does this open up new prospects for services beyond today’s transcode and deliver? Craig Dwyer, Senior Director at Avid believes it does.

Craig dwyer

Craig Dwyer

“Using new machine learning and content analysis technologies in the cloud enables search of archives with limited metadata to be discoverable in production timescales,” he said.

“Asset management in the cloud can be very easy to implement using templated deployment methods.”

Some are predicting that the old idea of the broadcast capital project is dead, and everything can be provided in the cloud, with no more funding than a credit card. Does this add up?

Not according to TMD’s Wilkins, who foresees a hybrid architecture. “I see a need for a private cloud for storage, with some on premises facilities backed up by the public cloud for services.”

Tedial’s Batista felt that the ability to outsource was a really useful asset at a time of huge engineering change.

“This is the core benefit,” he said, “making another company responsible for your IT support and maintenance.”

The clear message is that asset management is still a vital part of the broadcast architecture.

Dwyer of Avid summed it up: “Asset management continues to be the framework clients use to connect tools and systems across the content life-cycle.

“When we add the cloud attributes of easier deployment, elastic scaling, new machine learning and content analysis tools, we predict that asset management will continue to grow in importance across the entire media supply chain.”

IBC2017 conference session Cloud: How far can it go?