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VBrick Systems, Inc. Customer Case Study
“Our relationship with Microsoft has broadened the available market for our digital video solutions. Today many organizations are looking to implement live and on-demand video systems in order to reduce costs, increase productivity, and communicate more effectively. Windows Media based systems offer a high quality video solution to these organizations.”
—Bruce Webber, Vice President Engineering

VBrick Systems, Inc.
www.vbrick.com
Customer Size: 115
Country or Region: USA
Industry: Video Networking

The Company

VBrick Systems, Inc. is a provider of standards-based video networking solutions to educational institutions, corporations and governments worldwide. VBrick's digital video products are used for distance learning, executive and event broadcasts, training, news distribution, and surveillance applications. Based in Wallingford, Connecticut, USA, VBrick’s products are distributed through industry-leading value-added resellers, system integrators and distributors.

Software Products or Appliance?

The VBrick WM Appliance is compatible with Microsoft Windows® Media and converts analog video and audio from any source into digital Windows Media streams. It is an industrial strength, video appliance for one-way communication over low and medium bandwidth IP networks using the widely deployed Windows Media format. It attaches to a network and delivers the streaming video and audio directly to any Windows Media-compatible player or server. The VBrick WM Appliance can deliver the streams via multicast to any number of players on the network and it can serve the stream via unicast to up to 200 players or servers.

The WM Appliance can be deployed in a variety of ways and integrates seamlessly into existing Windows Media deployments. This product can reach thousands of people on an enterprise network, VPN, or the Internet.

The Windows Media appliance provides both Windows Media encoder functionality and Windows Media server functionality for live video. A key benefit is its compatibility with the Windows Media Player, thus eliminating the need for a desktop player installation.

Microsoft Protocol Programs Implementation Details

When VBrick considered developing this product it was clear that it would be essential to have access to details of the required protocol documents. The Microsoft Communication Protocol Program (MCPP) provided VBrick with good quality protocol documents along with Microsoft’s cooperation in clarifying the protocols when questions arose. Participation in Microsoft Plugfest gave VBrick’s engineers direct access to senior Microsoft developers to ensure easy adoption of the protocols. They also utilized extensive network stream analysis to look at the precise implementation of the protocols by various Microsoft products.

Results

VBrick introduced its Windows Media based products in 2005 and they have had a very positive effect on their revenues and customer base. The Windows Media capability combined with the MPEG based products has broadened VBrick's target market to include end users that have standardized on Microsoft’s software and ecosystem. In particular, VBrick's sales into the corporate/enterprise vertical market have grown over 50%.

From a sales and marketing standpoint, the Windows Media capability allows VBrick solutions to be sold into organizations that do not want to install additional software onto these same PCs. VBrick provides both live and on-demand based Windows Media Video delivery which meets most end users' demands.

Level of Satisfaction with Microsoft Open Protocols Support Team

VBrick was an early licensee in this program and has been impressed in the consistent improvements with the level of support offered by Microsoft’s MCPP team. The VBrick team is very pleased with the responsiveness of the MCPP team.