Posts Tagged ‘video streaming’

Online Video Platform YouReview – Kaltura

August 15th, 2011

By special guest blogger, Charlie Davis. This post originally ran on his blog.

In the jungle of OVPs, Kaltura is one of three open source video platforms according to our trusted resource,VidCompare.com.  Among the experts and journalists in the U.S., Kaltura holds rank among the most popular OVP providers, sharing press with Ooyala, KIT Digital, and Brightcove.  And, you’ll find Kaltura sharing industry insight into hot topics like DRM, mobile, and tablet delivery, as well as being a founding member of the ‘Open Video Alliance’ (www.openvideoalliance.org).

So, what makes Kaltura’s OVP stand out?  Well, from my review of their 30-day trial SaaS offering below, Kaltura offers more flexibility than most OVPs that will likely appeal to the technically saavy user or service provider.  With a role-based content management backend that provides batch processing of media files, content moderation, and insight into content origin, activity and usage, this OVP should be on the short list of anyone who wants more granular control over their content, their contributors, and the software that supports it all.

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Online Video Platform YouReview – Longtail Video, Bits On The Run

July 18th, 2011

By special guest blogger, Charlie Davis. This post originally ran on his blog.

From the casual observer to the online video professional, there should be no surprise that the online video platform market has two poles – free-to-use platforms, like YouTube, and popular pay-to-use platforms like Brightcove and Ooyala.  In the former case, you can publish your content but you may be concerned that your branding will suffer if your primary hosting site is also the home of dogs on skateboards and Rebecca Black.  On the other hand, you may not have the budget to spend at least $100/month on just online video alone and require something in between.  In between does exist, and we have almost a hundred OVPs in the market, many of which cost a monthly sum of at least a hundred bucks a month.  In comes Longtail Video, creators of the free and extremely popular the JW Player, who have released their own OVP called Bits On The Run.  They offer a monthly cost starting at under $10 and/or a pay-as-you-go service with no monthly fee.  Their minimum cost per GB – under $6.  Oh yes, even the author is reconsidering his video hosting provider.

» More: Online Video Platform YouReview – Longtail Video, Bits On The Run

Kaltura Launches New Online Video Partner Program

May 31st, 2011

Kaltura, one of the largest online video platform providers measured by users has announced an enhanced partner program already boasting more than 100 members. The Kaltura Partner Program aims to accelerate adoption of Kaltura’s video platform to millions of additional websites through global partners. The program is geared towards system integrators, value-added resellers, media consultants, OEMs, technology companies, and digital marketing agencies. Current members include Adobe, Amazon, Desire2Learn, DIMTEC, Edutech, HaiVision, HighWinds, Ignite Technologies, Nacamar, Parallels, Remote-Learner, rSmart, Siemens, Unicon, and many more.

As paraphrased in their announcement:

The Kaltura Partner Program offers its members unique benefits that include:

  • An OEM version of the platform that enables partners to launch their own self-hosted, white labeled, customized OVP services using their data center or cloud or choice
  • Flexible licensing options for partners that enable them to quickly generate high-margin recurring revenue by reselling all of Kaltura’s solutions:
    - Kaltura’s SaaS Service/ Cloud offering
    - Kaltura’s On-Prem (Enterprise) Licenses
    - Kaltura Advanced Add-On Applications
  • A Referral Program that provides commissions for referring new customers to Kaltura
  • An Application Exchange for 3rd party technology vendors that facilitates the development and sale of Kaltura-integrated applications, solutions, and services
  • A comprehensive partner support program that includes training, co-marketing programs, a partner portal, and field assisted sales

It appears Kaltura is picking up the pace in an attempt to catch up to Brightcove‘s already robust partner program with over 200 members.

VBrick Acquires Online Video Platform, Fliqz

February 22nd, 2011

More M&A in the Online Video Platform Space

The year has started out with a bang in the area of mergers and acquisitions in the online video platform (OVP) space. What many of us thought would occur last year, see 2010 Online Video Predictions, is now coming to fruition in 2011 first with Kit Digital’s purchase of not one, not two, but three online video companies in one fell swoop. On the last day of January Kit announced it’s acquisition of New York City-based KickApps, Paris-based Kewego, and San Francisco-based Kyte, for aggregate consideration of approximately US$77.2 million.

Today another OVP acquisition announcement is made, this time by VBrick purchasing the assets of veteran SaaS-based OVP Fliqz. VBrick is a dominant player in enterprise IP video offering live and on demand rich media experiences to over 9,000 corporate, education and government customers worldwide. Until now their focus has been largely B2B, concentrated on enabling businesses and government agencies with the ability to communicate internally via video, hold event broadcasts, and offer digital learning both inside and outside the firewall. I remember testing an early version of the VBrick IPTV solution back in 2003 when I was at CNET Networks.

Fliqz was one of the early OVPs (when the term OVP was popularized) to mass-market SaaS-based B2B2C video platform services bringing the notion of using online video for marketing purposes to the forefront of corporate online marketers. In fact, I helped build the first version of this solution with Benjamin Wayne, the founder and CEO of Fliqz when he hired me back in early 2007 (I left the company in June of last year). Fliqz made it easy for businesses to integrate online video into their websites with simple to use uploading, encoding, management, analytics, and playback video content tools.

In an interview with Doug Howard, CEO of VBrick I learned what they have planned for Fliqz and how they intent to integrate it with their VBoss solution to offer an all-in-one live and on demand video service which will appeal to a larger audience and further extend their reach with existing partners like Microsoft, HP, and IBM. I find the latter a particularly interesting opportunity for VBrick as they look at the OV longtail to address corporate needs to meld platforms together, offering a single point of presence for all video use cases. For example, adding value to existing tools like Mircrosoft’s Sharepoint by building online video directly into the service allowing users to access all forms of communication and collaboration in an all-in-one solution. 45 percent of VBrick’s revenue today is generated from existing customers expanding and adding SaaS services through VBoss and this new combined offering will allow VBrick parters to further sell into their Enterprise and SME channels.

In mid-2010, realizing their VBoss service could use a more robust On Demand feature set they began evaluating mid-tier OVPs with strong SME (small medium enterprise) offerings. Fliqz fit the bill providing a user friendly On Demand counterpart to VBrick’s already robust Live streaming solution. Doug summarized the strategic importance of the acquisition saying, “Fliqz jumped to the top of our list because of their strong presence in the SME space adding over 600 paid customers to our portfolio, as well as their ability to generate demand via an inbound sales strategy”, a sales impetus VBrick has wanted to focus on more closely. A third strategic imperative behind the Fliqz acquisition was their move from strictly infrastructure sales to marketing driven sales providing existing and new customers a multi-screen, unified system to communicate, collaborate, train, and market their brands ubiquitously.

VBrick will maintain Fliqz’s Emeryville office, further expanding their West Coast presence. Most of the Fliqz team will be integrated into the VBrick community and will be trained to sell a combined VBoss product that will offer both Live and On Demand video solutions. This is very good news for several existing and prospective Fliqz customers as Live streaming has been in high demand for several years, even while I was still at the company.

VBrick would not comment on the acquisition terms but did say that today they have 135 employees, are currently profitable generating $40 million a year in revenue, and will invest $1 million in Fliqz to integrate and help build out the existing product offering. They will continue on their acquisition path bulking up on SaaS-based video businesses as they push out Internationally starting with the UK, and expand their vertical markets into healthcare and others.

We expect to see further merger and acquisition activity in online video this year and will keep you posted on what it means for the industry. January and February have definitely set a trend pointing towards more focused and specialized business plans and product offerings. I look forward to more changes ahead.

Director Oliver Stone Invests in Online Video Platform, vzaar

November 23rd, 2010

In an interesting twist of events, Hollywood film director Oliver Stone invests in UK based Online Video Platform, vzaar. vzaar has been gaining traction in the highly competitive video platform space in recent months with one of the cleaner UI’s (user interface) we’ve seen in an OVP. Their UI is stripped down and very easy to navigate making it highly usable to even the luddites in the crowd.

Not only did director Stone invest in vzaar (deal terms undisclosed) but he also made a promotional video for them seen here:

As mention and as most of you know, the OVP competition is still heating up with 84 now in the VidCompare directory and a new comer being added tonight taking us to 85. Although, we’ll soon drop down to 84 again with the recent acquisition of  Gotuit by DigitalSmiths (more on that later).