Interview with Ralph Wagner - CEO of AXINOM GROUP
How does a global OTT service differ from a local one in terms of data availability?
The challenge is to have exactly the same data across the world in sync, so every instance can serve as a backup for any other instance, but at the same time, the service should still appear customized for every specific region.
In addition to the content metadata, also all the customer information like profile, preferences, and purchases will need to be available in every backend instance, in order to assure fast response times and allow traveling user profiles.
This means, every action of the user that triggers data update - being it registration, password change, adding a favorite, video bookmarking will have to be synchronized to every single instance across the globe instantly.
You also have to care for cases where the connection between the backend instances is interrupted temporarily - when a database is down for a while it needs to get the data updated later. You have to work with message queues where your different services subscribe to and really care for failovers, speed, and robustness.
For video delivery, the CDNs do all the heavy lifting. Is it the same for content metadata, subscriptions, and user data?
Every user is unique in its preferences and the more options you offer to express it, the more unique requests you will get from them in your content catalog.
This again means more traffic will bypass the CDN and hit your Origin. On the global market, you will need to deal with tens if not hundreds of different languages, separate country catalogs and in combination with the usual genre filters and sorting options, the combinations of unique catalog requests will increase explosively. Efficient handling of all this data and assets is exactly one of the main pain points of the service providers which we address with the technology behind the new version of Axinom’s global OTT platform.
Is there any obvious trap to avoid when planning to set up such a system?
I believe a topic that is often overseen is the quality of integration between the backend and frontend apps. It is not enough that it just works, a bad integration can easily increase the traffic by 10-20 times without any actual need.
We have seen frontends on different platforms providing the query parameters for the same request in a different order or using small caps vs mixed caps, which again will mean that more requests will bypass the CDN and the traffic on your API is higher.
Simple solution for that would be that your backend provider also provides pre-integrated frontend SDK-s and the frontend applications can be built around it. As a front-runner within the media and entertainment industry, we have tackled this problem by delivering a reliable, cloud-based video platform to the market, backed up with a unified video OTT software architecture and our largest product lineup so far.
Axinom is a leader in software development serving global brands in media and entertainment, telco, and aerospace industries. Axinom’s global OTT platform enables customers to launch their service offerings across all modern devices with unlimited scalability. It covers all capabilities required for end-to-end OTT solutions, including content management, ingest, encoding, protection, asset and metadata management, digital rights management, EPG customization, subscriber management, payments, analytics, reporting, advertising and monetization.
With offices around the globe Axinom supports customers worldwide. Engagement models range from fixed scope projects to provisioning long-term dedicated teams.
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