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Appear TV Expands Resolutions And Video Streams With ABR

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Appear TV is expanding resolution and video stream options with the Adaptive Bitrate Linear Packager (ABR), part of its OTT software portfolio.

Providing different resolutions and streams depending on the type of device being used, the ABR Packager will be showcased at IBC 2018 on booth 1.C61.

ABR adapts video quality to changing network conditions dynamically, providing optimal user experience according to bandwidth.

It is a powerful video segmentation engine that provides high-performance storage with internal and external options, just-in-time packager/DRM engine, origin server and optional offline encoding/transcoding. The software complements an encoder to produce streamable content and can adapt to varying workflows without affecting the end user, which contributes to overall user improvement.

"ABR is a dynamic solution for large-scale broadcast networks and channels, and cable operators that require the ability to adapt to different workflows," said Geir Ertzaas, R&D manager, Appear TV. "Appear's ABR Packager provides the right kind of video for a particular device through alternating or differing bandwidth constraints. This device saves on storage since the content itself is saved in an agnostic mezzanine format, therefore all reformatting and packaging is done on the fly and can thus easily target multiple specific device requirements with no storage overhead."

In a typical workflow, the ABR Packager is connected to a Digital Rights Management (DRM) system that provides security of the content, while working with content management systems and middleware systems for efficient delivery to the end user. With a massive storage capacity, the ABR Packager offers an unlimited ability to store recordings ranging in length from seven days to 100 days and more. Completely scalable to the user's specific requirements, the ABR Packager can fit into small installations while also managing upwards of 1,000 channels.

In addition to programmatic television and VOD, the ABR Packager can also act as an efficient web publishing system for highlights and clips of live TV news, weather and sports. For example, it was recently used during the World Cup to produce highlight clips from the matches and directly post this content to Web pages in the region.

When using Appear's ABR, providers can make on-demand content viewable immediately, with no lag from when a program is broadcasted on traditional TV to its availability as a VOD. The software also has blackout functionality that allows users to filter out programs that are not ready for VOD or Web publishing. This ensures that only approved content is available and viewable to the end user.

Another stand-out feature of Appear's ABR is its ability to save and promote ad markers, which can be used by a third-party system to replace ads in the program to target relevant user groups. This ad tagging ability opens the door for additional revenue streams within content for its clients.

The packager is easy to integrate into an overall service infrastructure with a complete set of REST-based APIs that allow full control over functionality. The goal of ABR is to simplify operational environments through great redundancy features and it has been field-proven with international broadcasters for several years now.

"There are four critical factors to adopting a new packaging system," added Mr Ertzaas. "These include efficient integration into the existing workflow, the operational ease of features such as configuration and redundancy, no impact updates and maintenance, and implementing good proactive monitoring to catch issues early and ensure the end customers are happy. Implementing these factors frequently requires the backing of a responsive vendor. Appear TV strives to deliver this excellency of service through fast response times and willingness to listen to our customers and adapt as needed."

Appear TV will be demonstrating the ABR Packager on booth 1.C61 at IBC 2018 in Amsterdam, 14-18 September.

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