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bandwidth must be available to deliver a high-quality experience, but in the majority of homes globally today this isn’t the case. Over time, however, these pockets of variability will even out and streaming services will be able to deliver experiences on par with traditional modes of video delivery for UHD. Multichannel UHD storage is another issue. The storage required for UHD content is enormous, even in the compressed domain. It essentially requires 4X to 6X the amount of storage for a given asset. It also can make intra- production transfer more challenging. While HEVC helps reduce the storage and transfer bottlenecks, migrating to UHD-capable infrastructure is a must. Finally, we’re now operating in an environment where there are no longer generations of encoders. The Elemental software-defi ned video processing platform enables constant improvement in algorithms for customers with a simple seamless upgrade. For example, our H.265/HEVC compression has improved by more than 25% in the past year alone and all through software refi nement. For UHD, we see a wide range of bit rates by low teens for “easy content” such as pre-produced VOD programming and high teens to low twenties for “hard content” such as live sports or other events as a rough guideline. While the cost of 4k equipment is incrementally higher than traditional HD gear at present, these costs will go down when 4k goes mainstream. Moreover, software-based 4k/ HEVC solutions, such as Elemental’s, will offer multiple cost-saving opportunities as content programmers and distributors transition their MPEG-2 and H.264-based facilities to support 4k and UHD streaming. The immersive nature of the 4k Ultra HD streamed viewing experience holds broad appeal and the industry is poised to make even the most compelling devices affordable to consumers. We believe 4k streaming is one of the multiple consumer trends that will emerge over the next fi ve years. But the bottom line for Elemental is that even if 4k doesn’t happen, all the investments that Elemental customers make in our solution would be completely reusable for other applications. This is the power of Elemental software- defi ned video processing platform. Change happens, and we have the fl exibility to adjust. Delivering 4k and UHD streaming milestones Huge steps forward toward more pervasive 4k were taken over the past six months, spearheaded by Elemental and key strategic technology and content programmer partners. These included the fi rst demonstration of real-time 4kp30 HEVC video processing at the Osaka Marathon, and real- time 4kp60 HEVC video processing at a special event in London. Leaders have taken note of Elemental’s successful delivery of multiple unprecedented 4k high-effi ciency video coding (HEVC/H.265) advances and the agility of its entirely software-based, format-agnostic video processing approach. Con sequently, as CES this year companies such as Akamai, Broadcom, Qualcomm, and ST Microelectronics, among others, tapped into Elemental video processing to power their 4k demonstrations. Show fl oor highlights included streaming of 4k HEVC and MPEG-DASH video to tablets and set-top boxes with Akamai, compatibility with STMicroelectronics and Broadcom hardware chipsets, and real-time encoding of MPEG-DASH-compatible DivX Live for HEVC-based content streamed to an Android tablet. Software - defined video processing is vital as the 4k stakes get higher Both the premium quality of UHD content and end-user enhancements designed to expand revenue opportunities heighten security concerns. Intelligent Elemental software- defi ned video processing platforms naturally evolve, seamlessly upgrading apace with the industry and capable of handling multiple generations of security requirements. Companies like Adobe, Apple, Microsoft and others and view software-based solutions from companies like Elemental as vital to heightened content protection requirements as the stakes get higher and higher. TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 87 MARCH 2014 | 63