Having just returned from IBC, I was gathering my thoughts on what I saw as the main themes. Every year something stands out as the theme of the show - UHD last year, 3D the year before that - and this year was no exception: Virtualization.
Everywhere you looked was virtualized this, cloudified that, software defined [ insert favorite word here ]. While this may just be another example of the media technology industry looking to its cousins in the general IT space and adapting and leveraging those technologies for its own, it absolutely supports our core belief that these changes are both inevitable, and ultimately hugely transformative.
In talking with many vendors, it's not yet apparent that they all have a clear understanding of what these technologies bring in terms of business benefit. They've been asked to support it, they've tested their core product in a virtualized environment, and yes, they can do it. There was very little substance on building core infrastructure to handle average loads and then bursting to support peaks, either via virtualization on-premise or in the cloud. Nor much on being able to pay for these services as you go, based on your demand, transforming that capital budget in to operating expense.
This could all just be due to the nascent adoption of these technologies in this domain, or still working through the details of their business models as they demonstrate pre-releases or proofs of concept, but let's all make sure that in adopting these technologies, we do it for the collective commercial benefit of all - not just technology for technologies sake.
Let's just hope that by NAB (206 days away!) when the tag-lines have moved on to something else (8k?), the real substance of the virtualization theme has been really thought about and productized