Disaster recovery for TV Networks

Traditional disaster recovery solutions for broadcasters and TV networks have relied heavily upon replication of the entire workflow. However, this method can not only be expensive, but also unreliable. With increased complexity, and multiple touchpoints, it can be challenging to safeguard the integrity of the broadcast workflow.

broadcast workflow

  1. Broadcaster’s premises: On-premises data storage systems can be rendered defenseless against natural calamities, and are vulnerable to data theft.
  2. Uplinking facility: Uplinking facilities also face the same threats as broadcaster’s premises. Naturally, the content and all assets are as vulnerable here as they would be in broadcaster’s premises.
  3. Satellite: The satellite itself could be incapacitated due to various factors such as radiation, weather conditions etc.
  4. Affiliate headend: Last, but not the least, the affiliate headends are also exposed to threats such as data-loss, or data-theft.

How cloud-based playout can create effective disaster recovery

Cloud-based broadcast services can help TV networks with varying disaster recovery needs create an effective, and on-demand disaster recovery infrastructure.

Moving the entire playout to cloud provides an inbuilt redundancy for not just the content, but also the playout and playlist schedule. This way, TV networks don’t need to invest into replicating entire broadcast workflow. Cloud provides unmatched flexibility when it comes to broadcast disaster recovery. This means, TV networks can choose to move entire playout to cloud, or only the rescue feeds. Both options help in lowering the CAPEX & OPEX.

Another benefit of using cloud playout for disaster recovery, would be low-latency capability of cloud to spin-up the backup feeds in a short time. TV networks can use cloud to create an always on disaster recovery framework that can be triggered as soon as the primary feed goes down, and can be operated remotely from virtually anywhere in the world.

Cloud is also ideal for broadcasters searching for a low-cost back-up solution. In this case, content and assets can be transported and stored on an intelligent receiver decoder (IRD) at headend to create a rescue feed that can continue broadcasting in an event of natural calamity. These IRDs can be accessed via a cloud-based interface from any remote location.

Handling natural calamities & man-made sabotage attempts with broadcast cloud

In case of a natural calamity, on-premises back-up options may turn out to be pointless, as the back-up servers would be equally affected by the disaster as the primary one. Manually maintaining datacenters in multiple non-contiguous locations inflate the infrastructure maintenance costs, and would leave the prized content assets open to data leaks.

A cloud-based disaster recovery can help in both cases, as an instance of cloud can be spun-up instantly in case of disaster, with built-in back-up on non-contiguous locations. Cloud-based recovery can be further enhanced with hybrid cloud options that add another layer of security. Finally, advanced encryption provided by the cloud-based recovery options help in tackling the menace of piracy, and data theft.

Advantages of cloud-based disaster recovery

  1. Flexible payment model
  2. Advanced content security
  3. Satellite-free streaming
  4. No changes to schedule
  5. Broadcast grade graphics quality
  6. No need to replicate entire physical infrastructure

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