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Working with the community at IBC 2019

IBC is a great place to see the communities and individuals that make up this incredible industry. Some communities are passionate about creation, others delivery, and even more about monetization. The variety, diversity, and focus across all of these communities are amazing and so is their focus on the content; content is what drives this industry, and we’re so incredibly excited to partner with every creative and every community to bring that content to life.

Yesterday’s IBC Leaders’ Forum was incredible – great program, speakers and topics, and a great lead-in to the official show, which starts today. Microsoft Azure, Dynamics 365 and our many customers and partners are excited to welcome you to IBC 2019!

Yes, our approach is slightly different than other cloud providers. For one, Microsoft is not in the media and entertainment industry. Instead, we aspire to be a partner to the industry and provide a neutral cloud platform to help studios and broadcasters compete and thrive. We’re excited to share our progress.

Lifting content creation workflows to the cloud

Demand for content is skyrocketing, straining existing on-premises systems and processes. MovieLabs recently published a paper on this demand and explored how the cloud can help. We also believe the cloud can transform this industry, which is why we’re incredibly excited to announce our new partnership with The Walt Disney Studios and our plans to bring Technicolor Pulse to Azure and our membership in the Academy Software Foundation.

Disney Studio Lab logo to announce partnership

Our work with Disney Studios started over a year ago as we worked together to deploy Avid in production for Marvel Studios. The entire team has been incredible to work with, and we’re excited to partner with the Studio through its StudioLAB technology and innovation hub to pilot new ways to create, produce, and distribute content in the cloud.

“By moving many of our production and postproduction workflows to the cloud, we’re optimistic that we can create content more quickly and efficiently around the world,” said Jamie Voris, CTO, The Walt Disney Studios. “Through this innovation partnership with Microsoft, we will be able to streamline many of our processes so our talented filmmakers can focus on what they do best.”

Technicolor logo used to announce partnership

We’re also working with Technicolor to bring innovative cloud-based solutions to the media and entertainment industry. Our work together starts with the migration of Technicolor’s Pulse solution to Azure, and look forward to bringing our cloud platforms together with Technicolor’s content creation expertise to unlock what’s possible.

These solutions will be built on code, frequently open-source, which is why we’ve decided to join the Academy Software Foundation as a Premier Member. Working together with the open-source community in this industry, we can bring the latest cloud technologies into projects for the Academy and its members.

With new managed service solutions from Avere, input from industry leaders like Disney, Avid, Technicolor and the Academy, we are working to bring the cloud to creatives everywhere.

Redefining media workflows in the cloud

Streaming was one of the first workloads to drive cloud adoption. Now over-the-top (OTT) services are entering their second era, characterized by the convergence of broadcast and OTT workflows in the cloud.

Haivision has been working with the community to address this convergence with unified media workflows in SRT Hub that are connected to the broadcaster ecosystem through Hublets. Avid already has a Hublet to bring live media into its NEXIS | Cloud storage for editorial workflows with MediaCentral, and Media Composer, Telestream is creating a Hublet to receive low-latency routed live streams into its OptiQ Channel in the Cloud for OTT delivery, and the momentum is building.

At IBC, we’re excited to showcase how Haivision’s SRTHub, Avid, Cinegy, Epic Labs, Make.tv, Telestream, and Wowza are working together to transform media workflows. Once transformed, you can reach customers everywhere in the world more efficiently and easily with free-of-charge data transfer from Azure Origins to Azure CDN from Microsoft and new live streaming optimizations coming for Azure CDN Premium from Verizon Media.

AI-based innovations for content and audience intelligence

As content creation picks up steam in its move to the cloud, and OTT enters its second phase, AI is what’s next. We’re excited to continue to bring the best of Microsoft AI to the industry through Azure Media Service.

We made our award-winning Azure Media Services: Video Indexer generally available at IBC last year. This year, we’re introducing additional support for two key areas: animated characters and multi-language transcription.

The demand for animated content is on the rise, and yet it’s very difficult for machine learning models to detect this content reliably. We worked with leaders in the industry to apply Azure Custom Vision to address this challenge by applying cognitive services to introduce new models that automatically detect, group and recognize animated characters.

We’re also introducing automatic spoken-language identification for multilingual content. Now, Azure Media Services: Video Indexer will automatically identify the languages used in an asset, transcribe them individually, and integrate the segments back together for you. Azure Media Services is also adding support for Live Transcription, giving users the ability to live-stream video, audio, and even transcribed text to audiences at scale.

Our partners are also using Azure and Dynamics 365 to improve customer engagement and monetization. PayWizard and Dynamics 365 will be highlighting these solutions in our AI and analytics showcase at IBC.

That’s a wrap

Thank you to IBC for providing a great environment for the industry and its many communities to come together. We hope to see you at our booth, walking or running in the 4K 4Charity Fun Run, or in one of our many sessions.

Have a great show!