As the competition for viewers heats up, Video-on-Demand providers continue to expand their services into new regions. This is with good reason; between 2016 and 2021 Deloitte tracked Netflix content and its impact across industries throughout Korea. It found that the investment in content production that Netflix had made in Korea, contributed almost 5.6 trillion (KRW) to the country’s GDP across related fields, from publishing, to webtoons, to consumer goods. This investment has also spread to other regions, with shows like Squid Game making it to the number one ‘most watched’ spot in territories such as the US and UK.
Creating media that can be cross-promoted throughout a platform’s global footprint, makes financial sense. It maximises the value of the content, whilst promoting an important cultural exchange. This strategy is as relevant for original productions, as it is for repurposed archive content or acquisitions from third parties. Localisation is about bringing people, with different cultures and languages, together through content. That said, it’s not without logistical and operational challenges for VOD providers.
In this 3-part series we’ll explore how faster media playback supports more efficient content workflows. In part one, we discussed speeding up multi-source content processing. Now let’s look at how providers can optimise content versioning and localisation workflows, to help future-proof the VOD model.
The More is More Challenge
Versioning is a great way of maximising the value of media. By editing shows and movies to ensure they are suitable for a wider audience, content owners can get more bang for their buck. But full-length content is not the only consideration, versioning is often needed for creating promotional assets and these can quickly multiply. When it comes to localisation, wider distribution is about more than language. Content must be culturally appropriate for the region it’s destined to be streamed in, as well as adhering to local compliance regulations.
If a VOD provider has a consumer base spread across multiple territories, it needs to compete with both local and global content brands. Delivering big ticket, original productions tailored to the region is a great way to entice viewers, but to offer real variety, providers need to optimise localised archive and acquisition content. With so many different versions and distribution channels, managing that media can be challenging. VOD operators need to review and process thousands of acquisition files, as well as pull from huge archives of classic content. This is entertainment on a truly epic scale.
Managing the Variables
So how can media companies maximise resources, whilst stopping versioning and localisation teams from burning out? – Until recently, proxy files needed to be transcoded to be viewed online, but multiple teams from different departments transcoding assets, means delays and duplication of effort. With remote workflows becoming more prevalent in the media industry, change is needed. By leveraging real-time media playback, VOD providers can monetise the archive, make the most of a new content acquisition, and exploit a valuable original production, quickly and easily at scale.
Real-time media playback, allows editors and localisation specialists to play full-resolution assets on-demand. Media operators can get to work in the browser immediately, frame-accurately and in the highest possible quality. Removing the need for proxies, cuts the time from ingest to playback. It allows operators to quickly check files for compliance red flags, and brings a much-needed immediacy to VOD workflows.
Preventing Duplication of Effort
To avoid duplication of effort, operators need a seamless workflow that eliminates the transcode step and optimises resources across teams. The stakes in localisation are high, as errors can lead to damaging repercussions for VOD platforms. If the original media can be viewed frame-accurately, with markers that highlight specific timestamps to be verified, accuracy can be assured.
When users work on the fly, it also takes the pressure off and allows them to maintain high standards. Regional promo teams can dip in and out of content, and just pull what’s needed without generating unnecessary versions. When dealing with culturally sensitive material, confidence in content playback is vital. Instead of using low resolution, non-native proxy media, operators can play high-resolution content, frame accurately in the browser, from anywhere.
Codemill’s Just in Time (JiT) media playback engine is cloud-native, and auto-scales on-demand. JiT can play all video formats, with embedded and discrete audio plus subtitles. Original, high-resolution media can be played from any storage location, whether on-premise or in the cloud, and JiT is available as an option for Accurate Player, Accurate.Video, and Cantemo MAM software. Find out more here.