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All packets are not created equal: why DPI and policy vendors look at video encoding

10 Feb

As we are still contemplating the impact of last week’s US ruling on net neutrality, I thought I would attempt today to settle a question I often get in my workshops. Why is DPI insufficient when it comes to video policy enforcement?

Deep packet inspection platforms have evolved from a static rules-based filtering engine to a sophisticated enforcement point allowing packet and protocol classification, prioritization and shaping. Ubiquitous in enterprises and telco networks, they are the jack-of-all-trade of traffic management, allowing such a diverse set of use cases as policy enforcement, adult content filtering, lawful interception, QoS management, peer-to-peer throttling or interdiction, etc…
DPIs rely first on a robust classification engine. It snoops through data traffic and classifies each packet based on port, protocol, interface, origin, destination, etc… The more sophisticated engines go beyond layer 3 and are able to recognize classes of traffic using headers. This classification engine is sufficient for most traffic type inspection, from web browsing to email, from VoIP to video conferencing or peer-to-peer sharing.
The premise, here is that if you can recognize, classify, tag traffic accurately, then you can apply rules governing the delivery of this traffic, ranging from interdiction to authorization, with many variants of shaping in between.

DPI falls short in many cases when it comes to video streaming. Until 2008 or so, most video streaming was relying on specialized protocols such as RTSP. The classification was easy, as the videos were all encapsulated in a specific protocol, allowing instantiation and enforcement of rules in pretty straightforward manner. The emergence and predominance of HTTP based streaming video (progressive download, adaptive streaming and variants) has complicated the task for DPIs. The transport protocol remains the same as general web traffic, but the behaviour is quite different. As we have seen many times in this blog, video traffic must be measured in different manner from generic data traffic, if policy enforcement is to be implemented. All packets are not created equal.

  • The first challenge is to recognise that a packet is video. DPIs generally infer the nature of the HTTP packet based on its origin/destination. For instance, they can see that the traffic’s origin is YouTube, they can therefore assume that it is video. This is insufficient, not all YouTube traffic is video streaming (when you browse between pages, when you read or post comments, when you upload a video, when you like or dislike…). Applying video rules to browsing traffic or vice versa can have adverse consequences on the user experience.
  • The second challenge is policy enforcement. The main tool in DPI arsenal for traffic shaping is setting the delivery bit rate for a specific class of traffic. As we have seen, videos come in many definition (4k, HD, SD, QCIF…), many containers and many formats, resulting in a variety of different encoding bit rate. If you want to shape your video traffic, it is crucial that you know all these elements and the encoding bit rate, because if traffic is throttled below the encoding, rate, then the video stalls and buffers or times out. It is not reasonable to have a one-size-fits-all policy for video (unless it is to forbid usage). In order to extract the video-specific attributes of a session, you need to decode it, which requires in-line transcoding capabilities, even if you do not intend to modify that video.

Herein lies the difficulty. To implement intelligent, sophisticated traffic management rules today, you need to be able handle video. To handle video, you need to recognize it (not infer or assume), and measure it. To recognize and measure it, you need to decode it. This is one of the reasons why Allot bought Ortiva Wireless in 2012Procera partnered with Skyfire and ByteMobile upgraded their video inspection to full fledged DPI more recently. We will see more generic traffic management vendors (PCRF, PCEF, DPI…) partner and acquire video transcoding companies.

Source: http://coreanalysis1.blogspot.ca/2014/02/the-case-for-sponsored-video.html
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The case for sponsored video

10 Feb

 

 
AT&T Sponsored Data 
We have all seen theannouncement  at CES this January. AT&T is to offer a new plan for its 4G customers, allowing companies to sponsor traffic from specific app or content. The result would be that subscribers would not be charged for data traffic resulting from these interactions, the sponsoring company picking up the bill.
While there is not much detail available on how the offer works and what price would the sponsor be expected to pay for the sponsored content (after all, subscribers all have very different plans, with different charging / accrual models), there has already been much speculation and comments in the press and analyst community about the idea.
I haven’t really read anything yet to convince me whether this is a good or bad idea, so I thought I would offer my 2 cents.

Costs are rising, ARPU is declining 

Ralph de la Vega, AT&T’s CEO was quoted commenting on the press release that AT&T has seen a 30,000% growth in mobile data in the last 6 years. This growth in traffic resulted in an increase in costs, paving the way for the license bid and roll out of LTE. US ARPU are declining for the first time in history, and with rising costs, network operators must find new revenue streams. Since video now accounts for over 50% of data traffic and growing, it is a good place to start looking.

Mobile advertising is under utilized, but there is appetite

According to KPCB, about 41B$ were mis spent by advertisers in the US alone, on old media (print, radio) if we compare to time spent on new media (internet, mobile). The Internet Advertising Bureau 2013 study (people were interviewed in Australia, China, Italy, South Korea, Brazil, UK, India, Russia, Turkey, the US) shows that a large proportion of users are “ok with advertising if [they] can access content for free”. The same study shows that announcers are looking at targeting (45%) and reach (30%) as the most important criteria to select a medium for advertisement. At last, video pre-roll seems to be the preferred format for advertising on tablet and smartphones.

Network operators are not (well) organized to sell advertising

Barring a few exceptions, network operators do not have the means to sell sponsored data efficiently. The technology aspect is sketchy. Isolating specific data traffic from their context can be difficult (think facebook app with a youtube embedded video served by a CDN) and content / app providers do not design their service with network friendliness in mind. On the business front, the challenges are, I believe, bigger. Network operators have failed repetitively in coopetition models. They do not have a wholesale division and mindset (everyone is scared of being only a pipe). On the bright side, Verizon, Vodafone, AT&T are putting forward APIs to start enabling content providers to have more visibility and varying level of control on the user experience.

Regulatory forces are not mature for this model

We have seen the latest net neutrality comments and fear flaring on media. Sponsored data and/or video is going to have to be managed properly if AT&T actually wants to make it a business. I am very skeptical with AT&T’s statement “Sponsored Data will be delivered at the same speed and performance as any non-Sponsored Data content.” I doubt that best effort will be sufficient, when / if advertisers are ready to put real money on the table. They will need guarantees, service level agreements, analytics to prove that the ad was served until completion in a good enough quality.

In conclusion, sponsored data is going to be difficult to put in place, but there is an appetite for it. Technically, it would be easier and probably more beneficial to limit the experience to video only. Culturally and business-wise, operators need to move in this direction, if they want to compete against companies for whose advertising is the dominant model (Google, Facebook, Linked In…). In order to do so, separating video from general data traffic and managing it as a separate service can go a long way. The biggest challenge will remain. It is one of mindset and organization. I am not sure that sending an email to sponsoreddata@att.com is going to get McDonalds to pay for my 30 minutes of YouTube if I buy a Big Mac combo.

 
Source: http://coreanalysis1.blogspot.ca/2014/02/the-case-for-sponsored-video.html

Optical Speed 2.0

26 Nov

optical1

Researchers from the University of Southampton are working in a project with the aim of increase dramatically the bandwidth of optical fibre. The project is called MODE-GAP that stands for Multi-mode capacity enhancement with PBG fibre. The results of this project would boost the capacity of nowadays networks by developing and testing advanced fibre technologies.

Nowadays the demand of bandwidth is continuously growing due to services like high quality video streaming or interactive gaming. Due to this situation and the limited performance of current optical fibre networks it is predictable that in a near future an evolution in the field will be needed.

Current optical networks are based in SMF (Single-Mode Fibre) and the new technology in development in MODE-GAP project will use FMF (Few-Mode Fibre) that will allow to transmit information in several light pathways.

Ian Giles, coordinator of MODE-GAP states: “When you look at the problem of SMF capacity limits, the simple solution may seem to be to increase the number of fibres in the network, but when you do this you also get increased cost and increased energy usage”

Basically what FMF does is using a form of ‘spatial-division multiplexing’, utilising the spatial dimension to increase transmission capacity. The team is also considering using a new wavelength range as another way of increasing capacity.

From Giles point of view, the development of this technology and its potential increase of capacity is a global solution that will benefit everyone using the network in the future.

It can be this technology or maybe another one, but seems clear that in the near future new developments will boost network capacity.

To more information visit MODE-GAP website or phys.org article.

Source: http://newhz.net/2013/11/25/optical-speed-2-0/

Mobile Video Offload using Wi-Fi is the only solution in the coming years

13 Nov

Personally, I do watch quite a bit of video on my phone and tablet but only when connected using Wi-Fi. Occasionally when I am out, if someone sends me video clip on Whatsapp or some link to watch Video on youtube, I do try and see it. Most of the time the quality is too disappointing. It could be because my operator has been rated as the worst operator in UK. Anyway, as the infographic above suggests, there needs to be some kind of an optimisation done to make sure that end users are happy. OR, the users cn offload to Wi-Fi when possible to get a better experience.

This is one of the main reasons why operators are actively considering offloading to Wi-Fi and have carrier WiFi solutions in place. The standards are actively working in the same direction. Two of my recent posts on the topic of ‘roaming using ANDSF‘ and ‘challenges with seamless cellular/Wi-Fi handover‘ have been quite popular.

Recently I attended a webinar on the topic of ‘Video Offload’. While the webinar reinforced my beliefs about why offload should be done, it did teach me a thing or two (like when is a Hotspot called a Homespot – see here). The presentation and the Video is embedded below. Before that, I want to show the result of a poll conducted during the webinar where the people present (and I would imagine there were quite a few people) were asked about how they think MNO will approach the WiFi solution in their network. Result as follows:

Here is the presentation: Video Offload -Six trends you NEED to understand! 

Source: http://arsmobilitas.com/node/37169

Cisco 3850 switch sample QOS Configuration for Voice and Video

4 Nov

The Voice Initiate

HINT: If you have soft-phones or Soft Video clients  on your network then this is not for you.  You might want to explore the use of access list instead. 

 

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Catalyst 3850 Configuration samples 

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This configuration was designed to optimize a network that generates 30% Voip and Video  traffic whilst the remaining is bulk data.  This solution is currently  working perfectly in  an extremely busy network. The brief was that the configuration be kept simple yet effective

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Steps:: 

Create two class maps: The first class maps matches the DSCP  and COS markings of Audio and Video traffic:

class-map rtp_audio_and_video
match dscp af32 af33 cs4 af41 af42 af43 ef
match cos 4 5

class-map signal
description voip signal traffic
match dscp cs3 af31 af32 af33
match cos 3

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One of the cool features of the 3850 switch is that it allows for the creation of…

View original post 661 more words

Calculating Bandwith for Video Calls

25 Oct

A few weeks ago I wrote a blog on determining the bandwidth used by voice calls in Calculating Bandwidth for SIP Trunks.  Now, while voice is an extremely important aspect of SIP communications, the beauty of SIP is that it isn’t limited to strictly voice.  On my various PC and smart phone clients I do voice, presence, instant message, and video.  While communications forms such as instant message and presence do consume some network bandwidth, it’s extremely low and neither is of a real-time nature.   However, video is very real-time in nature and will typically consume far more data than even the most data intensive wide band voice codec.

Video codecs have a number of distinguishing characteristics, but in terms of bandwidth utilization we are concerned with two major factors – resolution and frame rate.  Resolution is expressed by the pixel height and pixel width of the rendered image.  Frame rate is expressed in image frames per second.  Clearly, more pixels sent more often produces the best image.  This, of course, leads to greater bandwidth consumption and possibly less video calls on your network.

It is my experience that the following five video codes are the ones you will most often encounter with video calls – Divx, H.263, H.263+, H.264, and MPEG-4.  Each of these codes offer different resolution and frame rate values that ultimately create different quality experiences and bandwidth requirements.

For DviX codecs you will commonly find the following variations:

Client Setting

Resolution

Frames / sec

Quality

Bandwidth (kbps)

Average (kbps)

Very low bandwidth

160 x 120

2

Very low

10 – 20

15

Low bandwidth

160 x 120

10

Low

60 – 120

80

Medium bandwidth

320 x 240

10

Medium

150 – 300

200

High bandwidth

352 x 288

15

High

400 – 800

600

For H.263, H.263+, H.264, and MPEG-4 it looks like this:

Client Setting

Resolution

Frames / sec

Quality

Bandwidth (kbps)

Very low bandwidth

176 x 144

2

Very low

10

Low bandwidth

176 x 144

10

Low

64

Medium bandwidth

352 x 288

10

Medium

192

High bandwidth

352 x 288

15

High

512

Very high bandwidth

640 x 480

30

Very high

768

At this point you need to determine the number of simultaneous video calls and the quality level of those calls.  Unlike your voice traffic, these numbers might not be as easy to determine.  Video is still a relatively new form of communication and you may not have the empirical knowledge required to do a full analysis.  This means that you will have to take your best guess and be prepared to add or remove bandwidth as users become more comfortable with making and receiving video calls.

However, I will take a stab at a few estimates that may form the basis of your best guess approach.

Expected Video Sessions:

Subscribers

Sessions

10

8

25

12

50

17

75

23

100

27

250

54

500

95

750

134

1000

171

1250

210

Your number may vary quite a bit from these.  The important thing is to do the best job you can in determining the number of sessions.

Next, you need to translate those sessions into bandwidth requirements.  Given the above data I come up with the following video requirements in Mbit/sec.

Sessions

Very Low

Low

Medium

High

Very High

8

0.1

.6

1.6

4.8

6.1

12

0.2

1.0

2.4

7.2

9.2

17

0.3

1.4

3.4

10.2

13.1

23

0.3

1.8

4.6

13.8

17.7

27

0.4

2.2

5.4

16.2

20.7

54

0.8

4.3

10.8

32.4

41.5

95

1.4

7.6

19.0

57.0

73.0

134

2.0

11

27.0

80.0

103.0

171

2.6

14

34.0

103.0

131.0

210

3.2

17

42.0

126.0

161.0

To determine your particular bandwidth needs, I suggest the following:

  • Estimate the total number of SIP video subscribers that will be using each video quality level.
  • From this estimate, determine the number of video sessions using the above table.
  • Using the bandwidth requirements table, determine the bandwidth for each expected codec.  Sum those numbers.
  • Note.  Rather than trying to estimate for each video codec type, pick an average codec and multiply by the expected number of video sessions.

You then need to ensure that your switches, routers, queues, and uplinks are sized to meet the expected video traffic.  Also, make sure that you apply the proper QoS settings to ensure the best video experience possible.

I hope this helps you understand what you need in terms of bandwidth for your video roll-out.  It’s important to realize that video is not going away and the demand for quality, well-behaved video calls will be growing every year.  Do it right and your users will be happy.  Fail to plan and configure your network appropriately and you risk a help desk nightmare.

 

Source: http://andrewjprokop.wordpress.com/2013/10/24/calculating-bandwidth-for-video-calls/?blogsub=confirmed#blog_subscription-2

Video adverts – glass half empty or half full for mobile operators?

25 Jun

As radio access technologies have evolved and downlink speeds have increased, we’ve seen video content taking up a larger proportion of the total data traffic on mobile networks. Specifically, as RANs have moved through 2G to EDGE, UMTS and into HSPA, the combination of faster networks, cheaper data, smarter devices and better QoS for video means that video as a percentage of traffic has risen from 30 percent to over 50 percent.

In the five years since the iPhone first launched and kick-started a smartphone revolution, video has become a much bigger portion of traffic on mobile networks. Unfortunately for mobile operators, the proportion of revenue that video brings in has not grown at the same rate as the traffic. As we move into LTE and towards LTE-Advanced we’re going to see the share of video continue to grow.
We may not need to wait long for video traffic to accelerate its growth. Facebook looks set to begin moving forward with video adverts, a step that may be setting off alarm bells at networks operators around the world – or at least wherever Facebook has a presence. In the Citrix Bytemobile Q2 2013Mobile Analytics Report we found mobile Facebook usage has grown five-fold in a year, with the level of traffic Facebook generates growing from one to five percent of overall data traffic. That includes very little video. So, what happens when we add video adverts to Facebook?
In the same Mobile Analytics Report, we indicate that a single mobile YouTube session contributes the equivalent of ten mobile Facebook sessions — that’s the power of video. When Facebook rolls out video adverts, there will be an unavoidable bump in data traffic associated with Facebook. When video adverts are added to all of the other online services, that new traffic could start to have a seriously detrimental impact on the quality of service subscribers enjoy.

Of course, even in the absence of video adverts, operators have had to manage the growth of data on their networks – or risk financial implosion. The tools used range from relatively blunt instruments such as throttling and lossy compression to more nuanced approaches such as adaptive traffic management, the latter employed in the service of ensuring the best possible subscriber QoE within the constraints of the network. More recently, operators have begun to consider QoE as part and parcel of a differentiated services plan in which the subscriber experience – including access to particular content – is tied directly to willingness to pay. The question at hand is: which of the above approaches – or other approaches — are most relevant in the context of video adverts?

There are a few things to consider. First, these adverts will be pushed over the network over and over again, making the excess traffic challenge that much worse. Second, at approximately 2MB each, these adverts, if seen many times per day and month, can serve to consume a significant portion of the subscriber’s quota. Finally, the effectiveness of the advert and the likelihood of having a subscriber click through will be related to the video experience, for example the amount of time it takes for the advert to load.
Given these considerations, it’s clear that some degree of data optimization is required in order to reduce the overall transport costs and, perhaps more importantly, to minimize the hit to subscriber quotas. Adverts can be easily cached and highly compressed, so the blunt instrument approach could certainly be justified. After all, the operator isn’t making any extra money from these adverts. But they could be.
If ever there were an opportunity to pursue a two-sided business model – one in which the operator collects revenue not just from subscribers but from content providers as well – this is it. Both Facebook and its advertisers have a financial incentive to generate as many click-throughs as possible. Meanwhile, the operator — in partnership with an optimization vendor — has the tools at its disposal to affect this click-through rate while better serving the interests of its subscribers.
At the most basic level, an improved user experience enabled by optimization would better ensure the timely delivery of the advertisement. Taken a step further, the operator could use its understanding of real-time user experience to only send adverts when the subscriber is likely to have a good experience. Who’s benefitting here? Facebook (or equivalent). The basis for an agreement between the operator and the social networking site is thus established.
And it doesn’t need to end there for either party. The operator has the option of zero-rating the traffic associated with these video adverts, so as not to unfairly consume the subscriber’s data quota. The presence of a business arrangement between the two makes doing so even more palatable. Perhaps of most interest (and most controversy) is the idea of sharing certain elements of the subscriber profile – elements inaccessible to Facebook or the advertiser – thus enabling the more effective targeting of adverts. This, of course, is exactly what all parties want.
What looks at first like a network burden that must be ignominiously accommodated like so many others is in fact an opportunity for operators to establish partnerships with the content providers, for whom an enhanced subscriber experience translates to revenue.
________
*Chris Koopmans joined Citrix as vice president, Service Provider Platforms, with the acquisition of Bytemobile in 2012. He is responsible for product development, management and marketing for the Service Provider Platforms group, as well as the Citrix business strategy for telecommunications service providers. Koopmans was a founding engineer at Bytemobile in 2000 and rose to the position of chief operating officer, responsible for all aspects of product development, management, marketing, delivery, and support, as well as information technology (IT). He has over 14 years of industry experience in hardware and software engineering and architecture.

LTE, smartphones & video are adding up to a mobile data boom

3 Jun
 

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SUMMARY:The world of mobile is getting faster and faster, and that means more LTE everywhere. It also means less talking, more Facebook and, of course, more video. The bottom line — we are only just getting started. Some data points from Ericsson’s mobility report.

We all must love watching video on the go, or else why would Ericsson say that video traffic is growing on the mobile networks by 60 percent annually. Ericsson, whichreleased a new mobility report this morning, says that we will continue to see this trend as more people start to use smartphones and use them for everything.

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Of course, they would say that — more video over LTE is good for the carriers. It lines their pockets and it puts strain on the networks, which means they buy more gear from Ericsson. Okay, with that caveat out there, let us look at some of the salient data points from Ericsson’s report:

  • Total global smartphone subscriptions hit the 1.2 billion mark in 2012. We will see 4.5 billion smartphone subscriptions by the end of 2018.
  • Smartphones accounted for around half of all mobile-phone sales in Q1 2013, compared with roughly 40 percent for the whole of 2012.
  • So it is no surprise that mobile-broadband subscriptions are growing really fast — during the the first three months of 2013, they grew 45 percent faster than the same period in 2012 and now stand at around 1.7 billion.
  • More smartphones means more demand for data, ergo, data traffic volumes doubled between Q1 2012 and Q1 2013. Data traffic growth between Q4 2012 and Q1 2013 was 19 percent. Ericsson forecasts that the data traffic on mobile networks will grow 12-fold by 2018.
  • During 2013, overall mobile data traffic is expected to continue the trend of doubling each year.
  • Of course, a lot of this growth will come as a result of faster networks. Ericsson expects 60 percent of the world’s population to be covered by LTE in 2018.
  • Across the world 20 million new LTE subscriptions were added in Q1 2013.
  • In North America, driven by the U.S., LTE will account for majority of subscriptions in the region in 2016, growing to around 70 percent in 2018.
  • In comparison, by 2018, LTE will penetrate around 35 percent of the subscriptions base in Western Europe.
  • LTE subscriptions are expected to exceed 1 billion in 2017.
  • So what do we with all that speed? Spend more time on social networking: an average of up to 85 minutes per day in some networks. Looks like that Facebook addiction of ours is going to become super expensive!
  • And we don’t really spend that much time talking on the phone. Voice traffic growth between Q1 2012 and Q1 2013 was 4 percent. Ouch!
  • Ericsson says that web browsing and social networking will each constitute around 10 percent of the total data traffic volume in 2018.
  • Of course, we watch video — a lot of it.  According to Ericsson, the video traffic on mobile networks grew by 60 percent annually.
  • On some networks, video consumption is on average 2.6GB per subscription per month. That should make the network operators break into evil grins — more of our money into their pockets.
  • Of course, worried about its carrier overlords, Ericsson makes no mention of over-the-air communication apps in this report.

What Do We Do On Mobile Networks?

Now for more details about the mobile world at large:

  • Global mobile penetration was at 90 percent in first quarter of 2013 and mobile subscriptions now total around 6.4 billion. However, the actual number of subscribers is around 4.5 billion, since many people have multiple subscriptions.
  • China alone accounted for around 25 percent of net additions, adding around 30 million subscriptions during first quarter of 2013.
  • India added over 10 million, as did Indonesia. Brazil and Nigeria both added over 5 million subscriptions during the first quarter.

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We will parse some of the data in separate posts later.

Source: http://gigaom.com/2013/06/03/lte-smartphones-video-equal-to-a-mobile-data-boom/

Mobile Video on Diet with Social Graph

18 Dec

A new Bell Labs study suggests by 2020, consumers in the United States alone will access seven hours of video each day, up from 4.8 hours today, and will increasingly consume this additional video on tablets, both at home and on the go.

Consumers are expected to switch from broadcast content to video-on-demand services, which will grow to 70 per cent of daily consumption compared with 33 per cent today.

 

Their findings:

  • The proportion of time spent watching managed video-on-demand services and web-based video (also known as over-the-top – ‘OTT’ – providers) will grow from 33% to 77%. This will come at the expense of traditional broadcast TV services, whose relative share of time will drop from 66% to 10%.
  • Internet-based video consumption each year will grow twelvefold, from 90 Exabytes to 1.1 Zettabyes (an exabyte is equal to 1 billion gigabytes, a zettabyte is equal to 1,000 exabytes.
  • On-demand video services, such as high definition premium movie services as well as video sharing sites, will become even more popular over the next five years.

As a result, on-demand video will command an increased share of viewing hours, causing peak-hour traffic at the ‘edge’ of new IP-based networks to grow 2.5 times faster than the amount of traffic on the broadband connections reaching households.

Alcatel-Lucent concludes that shifting to a distributed IP edge architecture — and employing modern high-performance, intelligent service routers and CDN caches — like their own Alcatel-Lucent 7750 Service Router — will enable service providers to meet future residential bandwidth while realizing significant network savings.

MobiTV is utilized by all the major US carriers for streaming video, including AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint, T-Mobile USA, US Cellular and others.

MobiTV CTO, Kay Johansson, believes that wireless delivery of video is will be delivered by a combination of Unicasting, using technology like MobiTV for video on demand over a dedicated cellular channel, and multicasting, using standards like evolved MBMS (Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services).

One big breakthough, according to Kay, is the adoption of the H.265 standard (High Efficiency Video Coding), expected in 2013. It is expected to reduce the bandwidth requirements of HD video by 30%-50%. Where H.264 required 6-8 Mbps for HD video, H.265 requires only 3 Mbps.

At the 2012 Mobile World Congress, Qualcomm demonstrated a HEVC decoder running on an Android tablet, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4, showing H.264/MPEG-4 AVC and HEVC versions of the same video content. In this demonstration HEVC showed almost a 50% bit rate reduction compared with H.264/MPEG-4 AVC.

It is thought capable of delivering 720p HD quality video at 2 Mbps or less over a managed or unmanaged broadened network. The new standard is in its final draft and is expected to be approved by early 2013.
MobiTV has collaborated with Amino to develop a next generation TV Everywhere offering, consisting of an Amino set-top box fully integrated with MobiTV’s technology platform.

Live sports and VOD programing are expected to compliment each other, in a multi-screen environment. MobiTV already is supported by 275 devices. A recent ASAP settlement has taken away some of the uncertainty of wireless fee payments and the growth of tablets and smartphones seems to indicate a bright future.

Nielsen and Twitter today announced an exclusive multi-year agreement to create the “Nielsen Twitter TV Rating” for the US market. Twitter has become the de-facto second-screen chat room for television viewers.

This is being pitched as a syndicated industry-standard metric based entirely on Twitter data, not the standard Nielsen boxes that are placed in a scattering of US households. The new rating will be made available in the fall of 2013, and is built on the SocialGuide platform from NM Incite.

“As a media measurement leader we recognize that Twitter is the preeminent source of real-time television engagement data,” said Steve Hasker, President, Global Media Products and Advertiser Solutions at Nielsen.

eMarketer expects U.S. mobile advertising to nearly triple this year to more than $4 billion, largely driven by stronger ad sales for Facebook Inc., Google Inc., and Twitter.

Clearwire’s TD-LTE network will leverage carrier aggregation to bond two 20 MHz channels into a fat 40 MHz pipe. That should deliver 600 Mbps. Nokia did 1.6 Gbpsusing a 60 GHz channel. The near-term goal here isn’t to provide 500 Mbps or 1 Gbps to a single customer, but rather a consistent 5-10 Mbps to 100 different customers in the same cell, says Clearwire CTO John Saw. That’s television with H.265.

If “wireless cable” is even feasible , then it’s going to happen either on Dish’s 40 MHz of 2.1 GHz spectrum or on Sprint’s 2.6 GHz band.

Google could buy 2.6 GHz spectrum wholesale from Sprint, but Charlie Ergen has the Blockbuster franchise. That’s something both Sprint and Google could use. Meanwhile, Dish may have a hard time turning down a suitcase of cash from AT&T, while Carlos Slim probably doesn’t want to build a (redundant) network any more than Charlie Ergen does.

I’m still going with Google and Dish on Sprint towers. Then Sprint will sell 40 MHz of 2.6 GHz to AT&T. We’ll find out soon enough if I’m full of s***.

Source: http://www.dailywireless.org/2012/12/17/67290/

LTE and video elasticity

7 Nov

I often get asked at events such as Broadband Traffic Management 2012, where I am chairing the mobile video stream this afternoon, “How does video traffic evolves in a LTE network? Won’t LTE negate the need for traffic management and video optimization ?”. Jens Schulte-Bockum, CEO of Vodafone Germany shocked the industry last week, indicating that Vodafone Germany traffic in LTE is composed of mobile video for 85%. I think what most people fail to understand is that video, unlike voice or generic data is elastic. Technologies such as adaptive streaming and source based encoding by content providers means that devices and content providers, given bandwidth will utilize all that is available. Device manufacturers implement increasingly aggressive versions of video streaming, grabbing as much bandwidth that is available, independently of video encoding, while content providers tend to offer increasing quality if video, moving from 480p to 720p and 1080p and soon 4K. This was corroborated this morning by Eric Klinker, president and CEO of BitTorrent. Operators need to understand that video must be managed as an independant service, independently from data and voice as it behaves differently and will “eat up” resources as they are made available. So the short answer is no, LTE will not solve the issue but rather become a new variable in the equation.
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