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Grass Valley Goes to the Cloud with Release of GV STRATUS Playout

NAB 2014, Las Vegas, Booths SL206 and N2513, 2014 — GV STRATUS Playout, a revolutionary, cloud-enabled Software as a Service (SaaS) playout technology will make its worldwide debut at NAB Show 2014. The groundbreaking new solution, which combines the efficiency and flexibility of true cloud computing with the performance and rock solid reliability of a solid-state playout server on a card, is a groundbreaking approach for regionalized and network center-based playout. The solution will be demonstrated on the Grass Valley stand in the North Hall, N2513.

Marco Lopez, Grass Valley’s president, said, “GV STRATUS Playout genuinely delivers powerful, tangible benefits to the industry, foremost being the ability to install a single, solid-state card, establish an Internet connection and start playing out a new channel, in minutes. It’s fast, breathtakingly simple for the user and provides unprecedented flexibility.

“What’s more, the traditional complexities of new channel preparation and playout, and the need for ancillary support devices, have been vastly reduced. Because the card is your playout channel, there’s no need to rely on expensive, central infrastructure devices that compromise your ability to expand.”

The SSP-3801 solid-state playout module for the award-winning Densité modular platform enables broadcasters to leverage the enormous flexibility of the cloud-enabled system. The card is easily installed at the edge of any network and provides frame accurate playback, displays still and animated logos and high quality pre-rendered graphics and is easily configured over any network. Its power and reliability belie its small size and power requirements.

GV STRATUS Playout was designed from the ground up to provide the most efficient approach to critical automation functions. The playout software service handles playlist preparation, distribution, control and comprehensive monitoring of playout devices in the cloud. The broadcaster retains full control of the location and movement of their broadcast media. Ingest, content preparation and asset management, remain on premises.

Designed for the gamut of national broadcasters, specialty channel providers and playout service providers, GV STRATUS Playout utilizes Microsoft’s Azure cloud “platform as a service,” hosted in Microsoft Data Centers, which in terms of performance, resilience and scalability are vastly superior to anything that can be reasonably built within a broadcast facility. All GV STRATUS Playout metadata is stored three times in each data center and then replicated in real-time replication between data centers – making it highly redundant.

The new solid-state playout device, SSP-3801, uses solid state high-grade media storage and integrates with GV STRATUS Playout using secure web service protocols. The card runs as a stand-alone with an embedded Linux OS and can easily be installed anywhere, even adjacent to the headend to which it may be feeding content. The card is also resilient to network outages. In the unlikely event that connectivity is lost and, for example, a day’s worth of playlists and content are already loaded, the card will keep playing. Any status messages or playlist changes that occurred during the break will be automatically updated once the connection is re-established.

In addition to playout, GV STRATUS Playout is an ideal solution for regionalizing content. Broadcasters are increasingly looking to reach regional, local and even hyperlocal audiences with their channels, changing not just commercials but promotions and long form programming to cover blackouts or to provide more compelling programming. The barrier has been the expensive dependence and long term commitment to costly satellite bandwidth and complex playout systems. GV STRATUS Playout changes that.

Lopez adds, “GV STRATUS Playout offers a compelling and far more economical approach to regionalization, i.e., to transmit commonly themed content as usual, but provide certain elements over an IP network or the public Internet to Densité SSP cards and do the localization at the edge. Because the card has a highly flexible hierarchy of schedules and channels, a large number of channels can be operated very effectively from a single user interface.

“GV STRATUS Playout marks a quantum leap forward in integrated playout for broadcasters and playout facilities. The technical cost savings alone, coupled with increased revenues derived from a vast improvement in the ability to localize content make GV STRATUS Playout and its GV STRATUS foundation a highly compelling playout and nonlinear media production option.”

GV STRATUS is the core to Grass Valley’s end-to-end integrated solution, which manages the lifecycle of all media - from ingest to playout - by merging it all into a single workflow. The simplicity and powerful convenience delivered by GV STRATUS puts any content destination, whether broadcast, web, mobile applications or Video-On-Demand (VOD) within easy reach.

The new GV STRATUS Playout solution will be the subject of live theater presentations and demonstrations on the Grass Valley stand at NAB Show 2014, N2513.

See for more information about Grass Valley’s latest solutions.