The video content and distribution needs of commercial facilities today can no longer be served entirely through the simple connection of an HDMI cable between a laptop and a projector. As enterprises, campuses, sales and training centers, event facilities and other spaces grow and expand their offerings in terms of live content, they must seek quick, effective and efficient ways to serve those who are inside the building.
Depending on the type and size of the commercial facility, video uses will vary drastically. Let’s explore a few onsite video uses that illustrate the creativity that exists within this space.
Content Delivery Networks
When hundreds of people want to watch the same thing within a facility—be it a corporate presentation, a seminar, a lecture or live music—the typical approach has been to purchase access to a Content Delivery Network (CDN). That requires the internal signal to be sent outside the network, and then brought back in to each individual viewer with access to the CDN. That approach is problematic, because it can quickly overwhelm network bandwidth, it requires cumbersome credentials for users and it overcomplicates the process of communicating with live video internally.
IP Video Environments
Thankfully, the industry has evolved. Virtual CDNs can now exist within the firewall through more affordable means. That allows hundreds of individuals to connect easily and quickly through the facility’s existing network infrastructure. That simplifies content delivery for viewers, permits total control of content by an organization and becomes a more cost-effective method to deliver content.
Examples in this space range from large enterprises, which use it for corporate announcements, training and seminars, to higher-education facilities that offer on-campus delivery of lectures, music and other live events.
Integrating an IP video environment within an organization is often perceived as the precursor to implementing a broadcast component. Just using an IP video solution to integrate all potential video sources from a centralized control room, however, can help you discover unique efficiencies across large buildings and throughout sprawling campuses.
Simplified Updating With IP Video
One simple example is a university that’s dealing with large amounts of videoboards across a rather expansive campus. The school determines it wants each board to be unique in its design and in the information or internal content being displayed. Previously, a school’s IT staff had to go to each board and update a local computer every time an update was required. That is a cumbersome task and a drain on the IT department’s resources. However, upon migrating to an IP video environment, the boards can work as delivery systems for content that’s uploaded internally. Content can now be pushed to the boards from one room through a quick and efficient setup.
The other major benefit of bringing video connections online through a building’s existing IP network is that distant locations are now more quickly and effectively linked.
Uses For Video Distribution Over An IP Network
University sports have benefited from that, connecting live video to scoreboards, announcers’ tables and displays positioned near concession stands. Further, those links can be effectuated from anywhere within the campus infrastructure. So, football game video and stadium scoreboards can be controlled from a control room in a classroom on the other side of campus.
The applications are not always so grandiose in nature, though. Other applications include connecting two-way video between nurseries in enterprise and house-of-worship facilities, or allowing cell phones to serve as video inputs for live events.
Video IP Infrastructure
The expectation for these types of creative additions already exists. Luckily, there are ways to simplify onsite video-distribution applications. Businesses, campuses and live events around the globe are taking advantage of the ability to use IP network infrastructure—the Ethernet cabling that already runs through many buildings—to transfer video sources without the need for expensive new cabling.
Further, the market for creating workflows to handle these productions—the switchers, the graphics servers, the video mix engines, the video-delivery platforms—has become more affordable than ever. What used to cost hundreds of thousands to build up can now be done for as little as a few thousand dollars.
The content economy is here. Everyone already expects these new methods of communication. And, by using affordable, easy-to-use technologies, organizations can now create their own currency, in-house, by seeking innovative solutions to create and deliver video content to employees, visitors, students and spectators.
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