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Cisco optimises media experience

US-based network solutions provider Cisco launched this Tuesday new technologies to turn Internet Protocol (IP) networks into platforms for media-rich applications.

Known as 'medianet', this technology suite is designed to enable advanced communications, collaboration and entertainment experiences through video and rich media-optimised service provider, business, and home networks,

Data-based communications are being replaced by video and rich media, which is straining the architectural foundations of both public and private networks serving consumers and businesses. This network transformation toward rich media-optimised networks is the driver behind Cisco's video strategy and represents Internet networking's growing impact on the daily lives of consumers and professionals.

“The Internet and IP networks as we know them are changing,” said Marthin De Beer, senior vice president of Cisco's Emerging Technologies group. “In the near future, 90 per cent of consumer network traffic will be video and rich media.

Cisco released video-specific findings this week to provide new insights on a variety of consumer and business IP networking trends driven largely by the increasing use of video and Web 2.0 social networking and collaboration applications:

— Professional/traditional broadcast video content will become 80 per cent of all Internet video viewed on PCs/laptops by 2012.

— Traffic associated with user-generated video content will triple from 2008 to 2012.

— More than four billion video streams per month will be delivered through Internet-enabled set-top boxes by 2012. Internet-enabled set-top boxes include IPTV set-tops, next-generation cable set-tops, gaming consoles, and third-party standalone set-tops.

— Global video on demand traffic more than doubled from 2007 to 2008.

Network-based media processing

Cisco's Emerging Technologies group this Tuesday announced a media processing platform for businesses that simplifies live and on-demand media sharing across personal computers, mobile devices and other digital screens, by seamlessly formatting video and rich media for viewing on any device.

The Cisco Media Experience Engine 3000 provides media conversion, real-time post production, editing, formatting, and network distribution capabilities in a single networked solution to help businesses develop targeted visual communications that drive intimacy with employees and customers.

Non-stop video performance

As part of the mid-November introduction of the most powerful edge router in the industry, Cisco announced that its new ASR 9000 incorporates the Cisco Advanced Video Services Module (AVSM), enabling terabytes of streaming capacity at the aggregation edge while simultaneously offering content caching, ad insertion, fast channel change and error correction.

The Cisco AVSM eliminates the need for standalone content-delivery network elements and inherits all the high-availability characteristics of the router, which optimises the network insertion point for advanced content services and moves content sourcing closer to the consumer. Fast channel change and onboard error correction for both unicast and multicast video traffic helps ensure that errors can be detected by any set-top box and retransmitted within milliseconds to maintain a transparent and optimised visual experience for the audience.

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