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Haivision Demonstrates Makito X Family and HEVC Savings at NAB

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[Note: This sponsored interview was recorded at NAB 2014.]

Some companies come to NAB with nothing much new to show, and some come with enough announcements for two or three conferences. Haivision had a lot to talk about. Tops on its list is that the Makito X encoder has grown into a whole line of products.

"Many people know us as a solutions company, but NAB is a tech show, right?" asked Peter Maag, Haivision's CMO. "So we’re going to drop the gloves, as they say in hockey, and bring out all the stops on technology, and that’s what we’ve done here…The Makito X has blossomed into a whole family of products, leveraging great architecture that our team brought to the market."

HEVC was a big topic at the 2014 NAB conference, but most companies tied it to 4K solutions that were a year or two in the future. Haivision, on the other hand, showed how it's using HEVC today to deliver streaming gains on fixed-bandwidth connections.

"Haivision’s clients, our institutional clients, are interested in getting the best picture quality across their fixed pipes," Maag said. "We do a lot of business in the Fed, right? -- military -- so they’ve got these fixed pipes and they need to increase the quality over fixed bandwidth. We’ve actually launched and delivered HEVC to those guys so that they get a 50 percent quality improvement over their current pipes."

For more of Haivision's many NAB announcements, watch the full video below.

 

Eric: Hi. I’m Eric Schumacher-Rasmussen, here, at NAB 2014 with Peter Maag, who’s the CMO of Haivision. How you doing, Peter?

Peter: Hey, thanks, Eric. I’m doing great. Thank you very much.

Eric: Excellent. Excellent. And as most of our readers know, Haivision has long been at the forefront of encoding video processing. You’ve got a lot going on here at NAB. Tell us about it.

Peter: Yeah, well, Haivision, many people know us as a solutions company. But NAB is a tech show. Right? So we’re going to drop the gloves, as they say in hockey, and bring out all the stops on technology. And that’s what we’ve done here. A couple a hot things that we’re focusing on. The Makito-X has blossomed into a whole family of products, leveraging great architecture that, you know, our team brought to the market. You know, as we -- we brought out, last year, twice the encoding, twice the quality. But we’ve brought out the matching decoder, which is really cool, which is what everybody’s been waiting for, these high quality pipes. And one of the cool things that we’ve done with these is we’ve applied a new technology to them called SRT.

Eric: Right, tell us about that. What was behind the build of SRT? Why did you do it?

Peter: Oh, that’s been a bit of a road. It was about a year and a half ago at IBC where I was just overwhelmed with the requirement to pump more video across low-cost networks. And so we sicced our team on it. Right? Our team in Hamburg, great engine builders for Haivision. And they brought together, they packaged together, a lot of things that we had already worked on a little bit, which is, you know, the air packet recovery error correction. So SRT is secure reliable transport. Right? That’s our marketing term. But it encapsulates error recovery, security, as well as -- because Haivision is in control of the encoder and decoder -- apply SRT at the end of that pipe and we can detect the network characteristics and dynamically adjust the encoders and decoders to deliver the best video stream.

Eric: Okay, who are you targeting with the Makito-X with SRT?

Peter: That’s a great question. Certainly our bread and butter clients love SRT. So our first deployment was actually into a CoolSign system. A bank in Denmark called Jyske Bank. They have about 600 branches, CoolSign players everywhere. They’re really, really into their media. Right? And they wanted to bring the media to life. So they took the Makito-X with SRT, dropped it down at NASDAQ, took the live feed from the trading floor, pumped it over the public internet into the production headquarters and distributed throughout their signage deployment. So that’s like a really enterprise application but also the quality of the X, the cost points, price points of the X encoder and decoder are making an amazing tool for broadcast contribution, for news. And, you know, people know the Makito. Its sweet spot is, like, you know, that one to four megabit per second. It just really rocks with quality. So it’s really opening out. It’s, you know, reinforcing our markets and opening up new markets for Haivision.

Eric: Right. Speaking of new markets, new technologies, once again this year there’s a lot of buzz at NAB about HEVC. What’s Haivision doing with HEVC? What does it mean to you and your customers potentially?

Peter: Yeah. What’s the number one question you get about HEVC? Sorry to turn the interview around.

Eric: No, the number one question we get is, is anybody using it?

Peter: Is anybody using it? When’s it going to be adopted? Exactly. Now, HEVC, you know, brings the quality, brings 4Kand people are asking, “When is this going to be available?” Well, Haivision’s clients, our institutional clients, are interested in getting the best picture quality across their fixed pipes. So, you know, we do a lot of business in the Fed, right. Military, so they’ve got these fixed pipes and they need to increase the quality over fixed bandwidth. So we’ve actually launched and, you know, delivered HEVC to those guys so that they get a 50 percent quality improvement over their current pipes. So we’ve encapsulated the HEVC in our Kraken technology. So the way the workflow goes is you have baseband or an H.264 cloud. You grab it into the Kraken. It transcodes it or encodes it to HEVC, transports it across the pipe with or without SRT. Right? And then at the other end of the pipe, we have a Kraken transcoder which blossoms that back into a H.264 workflow.

Eric: Oh, really?

Peter: So it’s actually, you know, one of the only companies, if not the only company, delivering HEVC in a practical application today.

Eric: Okay, well, so I guess the last question about HEVC is, beyond applications like that, what are the barriers to HEVC adoption and what is Haivision doing to try to overcome them?

Peter: Like everybody asks, “When’s the Makito going to get HEVC?” Well, I think, you know, certainly, there’s a lot of barriers in distribution and downstream workflows to HEVC. We’re actually showing some advance technology, some really cool stuff. You know, simultaneous H.264 and HEVC over DASH and stuff like that. So whenever the endpoints are ready, whenever the market’s ready, Haivision is there to supply the latest technology. And what’s really cool is we get to bake it in some very rigorous applications before the masses need it. So, again, just like with H.264 we’re really leading the market in development for this technology.

Eric: Very cool stuff. And we’ve written often about Haivision on StreamingMedia.com and, of course, you can learn more at www.haivision.com. Thanks so much, Peter.

Peter: Eric, it’s been a real pleasure. Thank you very much.

Eric: Outstanding thanks.

Peter: See you.

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