Broadband and video service providers alike are increasingly looking to streaming content services as a viable video service option. We characterize these growing streaming video services as broadband TV. They may involve OTT type services, or could be streaming video across a closed managed broadband network, not unlike traditional IPTV.
What broadband TV brings to service providers is a much lower cost video service option because it doesn’t require a full blown video headend, nor does it require expensive traditional set-top-boxes in the home. Many service providers, large and small, are moving forward with broadband TV. Some smaller providers are streaming local broadcast channels across their managed broadband network to a Roku or other streaming set-top-box, and integrating that local content with wide ranging OTT content for a broadband TV offer.
Larger providers like DISH, with their Sling TV offer are providing more robust OTT services, providing a growing Internet delivered channel line-up, both inside and outside of the home.
Dascom Systems Group is a systems integrator for broadband and video service providers, building and integrating the systems to deliver broadband TV services. Kris Apfelbacher, director of video solutions for Dascom shared some valuable insight into the growing deployment of broadband TV. One issue that continues to be a challenge for growing broadband TV momentum is content licensing rights.
“What we’ve learned though is that the content operators still kind of hold the keys to the car on exactly what they’ll . . . allow you to do with their channels,” said Apfelbacher in an interview (below). “We can make the streaming TV, the quality is there, the type of authentication and stream encryption to mimic a traditional pay-TV service are there, it’s really just the content operators getting a little more comfortable with that type of a solution.”
Apfelbacher also outlines what broadband TV is from a service provider’s point of view, some deployment scenarios, as well as some early results from broadband TV deployments.