Introducing ActiveVideo AppCloud

active-video-play-appcloud

App-driven TV content is here to stay

Consumers spend 55% or more of all viewing hours watching TV according to the Conviva Q2 2019 State of the Streaming Industry report - TV is still the screen of choice by far.

New TV experiences however are becoming increasingly app-driven, which presents both challenges and opportunities for Pay-TV service providers and content providers alike.

Ultimately apps are essential to the viewing experience and therefore Service Providers need an app-store. The question is how best to provide it, given current service offerings, the installed base of devices and future portfolio plans. 

Deploying apps and an app-store often means a trade-off between level of effort and level of control

To deliver apps and next-gen TV experiences, operators must first decide on a managed or Do-It-Yourself approach.  The most established platform offerings are Roku, X1, and AndroidTV, providing reliable turn-key solutions, with all core software provided. Of these, Android offers the broadest availability of ready-made apps. According to Shalina Guvil-Pai, Platform Chief for AndroidTV, more than 5000 were available as of January 2019. Turnkey solutions can be easier to deploy, but also create new challenges - With no fundamental control over apps, content or features, Service Providers start to lose control of their service, subscribers and data. There are no alternatives to platform features like voice assistants and over time, mandatory version updates put more pressure on device resources, impacting performance.

DIY solutions such as RDK and AOSP give more flexibility and control but are time-consuming and resource-intensive to develop and deploy - also the responsibility for establishing partner agreements falls directly with the provider.  The biggest problem facing operators is that software and app-based OTT development will always outpace hardware capabilities - and even the greatest next-gen hardware platforms become underpowered.  With more and more entrants into this OTT market emerging every day, this problem is made worse.

Effort-Control trade-off V2

 

The app-device treadmill

App-Device treadmill

 

  1. An operator must port, certify and update apps - supporting the current installed base of devices is expensive and time-consuming
  2. Then, any decision on replacing existing devices with new offerings puts a heavy burden on CapEx
  3. App performance is limited by box capability - CPU and memory will eventually become a constraint
  4. With more, larger and increasingly demanding apps, eventually  app software outpaces the capabilities of the hardware

Can an Operator achieve the best of all worlds?   A turn-key option that minimizes deployment effort and maximizes roll-out speed? A solution that combines the breadth of apps available for Android or already developed on HTML? A solution capable on any device - Current and legacy - meaning the user experience is consistent and the OTT content has the farthest reach?

Achieving the best of all worlds means breaking apart the key dependency between Software and Hardware. And that’s why ActiveVideo’s AppCloud has been created.

AppCloud frees you from the app-device treadmill

AppCloud enables Service and Content Providers to access and deliver key Android apps for TV, even if they don’t have Android devices deployed. It provides a turn-key, customizable, simple-to-use storefront, seamless integration into an operator’s UI, and even advertising monetization opportunities.

How does AppCloud work?

AppCloud enables Operators to install any OTT app once and deliver to all devices in their ecosystem, regardless of device operating system or capabilities. This fundamentally breaks the cycle of continually matching hardware capabilities to rapid software advances.

AppCloud Schematic V2

 

  1. AppCloud lives in the public cloud, delivering apps that run in a virtualized AOSP environment
  2. AppCloud delivers direct to next-gen devices - no premise equipment needed
  3. All DRM and video content delivered end-to-end, direct to device
  4. Legacy devices can be served as needed, with AppCloud Connect

AppCloud is hosted in the public cloud and managed and operated by ActiveVideo.  Apps run in a virtualized AOSP environment in their native form (APK or HTML).  The IP set-top devices can support any environment e.g. Android or RDK, and operators can integrate existing User Experience implementations. AppCloud works over any IP network Wi-Fi, or even 5G and with apps running virtually in the cloud, pressure comes off the device CPU, GPU and memory, reducing costs and extending the device life as applications become ever more resource-intensive. 

Content retains existing end to end DRM and video path flows from the CDN, enabling the solution to match current, expected delivery compliance - and leveraging ActiveVideo’s GPU-streaming technology allows all of this to happen at ultra-low bandwidth with no latency.   

Managing legacy devices

Many operators have legacy QAM, IP or Hybrid devices in the field (est. 300m globally), the benefits of AppCloud can even be extended through AppCloud Connect, bringing the latest operator UX, along with OTT and HTML5 apps, securely and efficiently.

With the ability to integrate with existing back office and billing systems, subscriber management and relationships are maintained while the services offered are expanded.  This approach maintains integrity of subscriber data from an ownership and control perspective and can be used to drive digital advertising approaches within the app store framework and streamed content services.

  • Public Cloud Platform
  • Android and non-Android IP devices
  • Android APK and HTML Apps
  • Turn-key deployment / SAAS model
  • Ultra-low bandwidth (via GPU Streaming)

Deliver a virtualized Android app store & apps.  Efficiently stream to any next-gen IP device.  Reduce memory and overall time to market 

AppCloud
appcloud connect
appcloud connect

AppCloud Connect

Interface and enable AppCloud storefront and Apps to run on hybrid and legacy devices supported by AppCloud Local.

AppCloud Connect

Interface and enable AppCloud storefront and Apps to run on hybrid and legacy devices supported by AppCloud Local.

  • Premise / Private Cloud Platform
  • QAM and IPTV devices
  • Advanced HTML5 apps (OTT/Mosaic/VOD)
  • Software License Model
  • Video and Graphics streaming

Deliver a consistent, custom experience across all set-tops. Deliver OTT or custom HTML apps securely & efficiently

CloudTV

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