IBC 2018: Imagine Touts Versio Momentum

AMSTERDAMS–In advance of the 2018 IBC Show starting later this week at the RAI in Amsterdam, Imagine Communications says its Versio microservices-based playout solution has become “the platform of choice for global media companies at every stage of the transition to next-generation technology.” In the last three months alone, Imagine says customers worldwide have used Versio to put more than 100 channels on air.

Combined with the company’s Zenium microservices platform, the Versio playout solution has gone from “pioneering to proven,” according to Steve Reynolds, president of Playout and Networking at Imagine Communications.

“Imagine was a very early advocate for cloud-native and microservices-based innovation, and it took time for the industry to understand and accept this significant technology shift,” he said. “Time and time again, we have shown that no other system provides the flexibility or the time to market advantage of Versio.”

At IBC2018, Imagine will demonstrate a complete Versio-based playout and media workflow platform spanning from ingest, prep and playout to automation, graphics, master control and branding. The company will also showcase various transition scenarios that allow customers to gradually layer in new features and capabilities that the Versio playout engine offers—and migrate from traditional to next-generation playout operations at a pace that works for their operation, whether in a traditional broadcast center, a data center, or private or public cloud.

Over the past year, Imagine says Versio has been deployed by media companies around the world in multiple applications including Atresmedia, a Spanish commercial broadcaster that complemented its existing Versio integrated playout installation with a Versio-based disaster recovery playout center; Jawapostv, an Indonesian news broadcaster that chose Versio for the upgrade of its master control room for HD playout operations; and Dubai’s Abu Dhabi Media, which used Versio as the foundation for a full upgrade of its central technical facility, which currently supports playout of 15 HD channels, but is future-proofed to incorporate IP connectivity.

[Read: IBC2018 Preview: Transforming Theory To Application]

France Télévision used Versio to undertake the first large-scale hybrid SDI/IP playout implementation in the country as part of an upgrade of its master control functionality for France Ô, which provides television services for the nation’s overseas territories. In addition, French operator Médias du Sud chose Versio to support the “VIA” initiative that formed the basis of the first national grouping of local TV stations in France. Médias du SUD/VIA plans to eventually extend to cover 30 stations, all driven from the same central playout data center.

In Thailand, True Visions, a leading cable and satellite operator in the country deployed Versio—in a playout architecture that took just four weeks to set up—to deliver the FIFA World Cup in 4K Ultra HD to its subscribers. The deployment represented what Imagine says is “the first Ultra HD channel in Southeast Asia.”

In the U.S. Sinclair Broadcast Group is using Versio in a fully virtualized public environment for its KidsClick Diginet, using the public cloud to distribute the channel’s children’s programming in a Software as a Service (SaaS) environment to affiliates across the country.

“The scalability and customization capabilities that the public cloud approach offers is unlike anything we could do using a traditional, on-premises model,” said Del Parks, CTO, SBG. “And since we’re only delivering this programming for a few hours a day, the flexibility of originating in the public cloud is a far superior alternative to purchasing traditional equipment that would sit idle for many hours at a time.”

Imagine Communications will be in Stand #4.01 at the Amtrium in the RAI. 

Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.