2/28/2012 6:39 AM
TopFun, one of the first online video stores in the Czech Republic, is powering its new PayTV media distribution service, TopFun TV, using technology supplied by leading broadcast and multiscreen systems integrator Visual Unity.
Established in 2010, TopFun offers a huge range of movies to download and watch online via its video on demand (VoD) service. Similar to the hugely popular NetFlix, TopFun allows customers to sign up for an account and watch movies immediately, or save them locally on their PC or multimedia device. In January 2012, TopFun launched TopFun TV, a new service that distributes media streams commonly broadcasted via satellite and cable TV to smart phones, iDevices, set-top boxes and Smart TVs, including a unique application for Samsung TVs which lets viewers access live feeds and download movies direct to their TV.
Since its launch, TopFun has partnered with Visual Unity, a leading broadcast and multiscreen systems integrator, to design and expand its operations. Instrumental to the success of its services is Visual Unity’s award-winning vuMediaTM integrated content management and delivery platform. vuMediaTM ensures a cutting-edge viewing experience on any screen or connected device, enabling broadcasters to manage, monetize and monitor multiscreen delivery. The platform supports comprehensive VoD services, integrating with billing and CRM processes.
Visual Unity initially provided TopFun with a vuMedia-based solution for its movies on demand service. This incorporated a protected VoD solution alongside content delivery to the Czech and Slovak Republic through vuNet™, Visual Unity’s robust and secure distribution infrastructure that ingests, manages and distributes assets. vuNet™ connects seamlessly with global Content Delivery Networks and cloud-based services, although in the case of TopFun the company has employed Visual Unity’s own Content Delivery Network (CDN), which has an installed capacity of more than 100 GBps and almost 400 TB storage space. Capable of supporting tens of thousands of concurrent users, Visual Unity’s CDN provides secure local coverage across Europe and Central Europe, including Germany, Hungary, Slovakia and Romania, with new POPs now in action across the Middle East.
Tomas Petru, President of Visual Unity, says: “TopFun chose to work with Visual Unity on the basis of our proven experience in multiscreen integration. With over 20 years’ experience in delivering and technically supporting linear to multiscreen solutions, we were able to demonstrate to TopFun that we had successfully handled similar VoD projects for customers such as voyo.cz and cinema.cz.”
The success of this initial involvement was acknowledged in January when TopFun returned to Visual Unity for help in setting up TopFun TV. This involved an expansion of the vuMedia system to incorporate secure, live multiscreen content distribution to mobile devices and on the fly transcoding of 15 live channels in SD and HD quality. Plans are in place to expand the system to 30 channels.
Radek Přikryl, sales director of TopFun, says: “We enlisted Visual Unity’s help with this project on the basis of our excellent relationship with the company and our good experiences with its vuMedia platform, which has allowed us to get as close as possible to our end customers. We are also very happy with Visual Unity’s vuNet module, which has enabled us to stream digital content in the Czech and Slovak Republics and to distribute both VoD and linear broadcast streams. Visual Unity has given us all the technical support we have needed and this on-going assistance is greatly valued by TopFun.”
Tomas Petru adds: “The TopFun projects have worked extremely well and it is always satisfying when a customer returns to Visual Unity for help in expanding their business. We are continuing to support TopFun and TopFun TV and we are confident that our in depth understanding of the complexities of the broadcast chain, coupled with our in-house software expertise, will enable them to optimize their workflow and control how their brand is managed and monetized in the multiscreen environment.”
About Visual Unity
Visual Unity is an international Systems Integrator bridging the gap between broadcast and software-based media systems, to help clients reach and engage audiences – wherever they are. The team has been designing and delivering turnkey TV systems, broadcast-IT convergent and multiscreen solutions worldwide since 1991 – from HD Outside Broadcast vehicles and major playout facilities to automated Direct-to-Web platforms.
Visual Unity’s award-nominated vuMediaTM platform helps broadcasters and content owners control how their brand and assets are managed and monetised in the multiscreen environment. Through four highly scalable and flexible modules, the vuMediaTM platform delivers a cutting-edge web-based and mobile viewing experience, comprehensive VOD services and a secure robust Content Delivery Network – all of which can be seamlessly deployed into existing workflows. www.visualunity.com