Sky Italia Speeds Content Availability with Akamai and Aspera
Combination of Akamai content storage and delivery with Aspera acceleration delivers 650-percent improvement in video upload speeds and enhances online viewing experience
Akamai Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM), a leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimizing and securing online content and business applications, today announced that Sky Italia has improved and simplified its workflow with Akamai's Media Delivery solutions. With the combination of the leading high-speed file transfer solutions from Aspera, an IBM company, and Akamai's NetStorage cloud-based storage platform, Sky has realized an increase in file upload speed by up to 650 percent.
Since their launch in 2012, Sky Go and Sky on Demand have quickly come to be among the most popular video content services in Italy with over three million combined active users. To cope with this demand and an increasing amount of content offered via mobile devices, Sky needed to improve the upload speed of titles onto its storage systems in order to grow the breadth and quality of its content offerings. This required the right partner to help Sky improve their offering without additional infrastructure investments.
"With a 2500-movie library, almost five million subscribers to our satellite channels and more than two million weekly downloads, it is important that we are able to offer new content in the fastest and most effective way without affecting quality," explained Vincenzo Roggio, Distribution Platform Design & Development Engineer, Sky Italia. "Since we added Akamai's new Aspera high speed file upload service to our NetStorage platform, we have dramatically increased upload speed, resulting in an optimized content management workflow."
"There are numerous challenges that media companies such as Sky face when launching new online and on demand services," said Doug Tilford, senior vice president & general manager, EMEA, Akamai. "The close integration between Aspera and Akamai creates a complete system that makes it as easy as possible for Sky to turbo charge its upload capabilities, allowing subscribers to access a continuously updated video library featuring thousands of titles, which they can instantly download and view whenever they want, even from mobile devices."
Integrated directly into Akamai's NetStorage cloud-based online storage platform, the Aspera upload acceleration option provides a significantly faster means for Sky to upload content regardless of file size or geographic distance. This mitigates the bottlenecks inherent in traditional network protocols that limit the speed and reliability of large content files into Sky's storage system. With Aspera, Sky can quickly and securely upload new content, enabling it to deliver more content to its customers.
Sky has been a longtime user of Akamai's Media Delivery solutions to help make it possible to quickly distribute online rich media at high quality. Thanks to this solution set and ongoing technological innovation, Sky has been able to ensure an uninterrupted stream of HD video optimized for both online and mobile viewing. The service has also enabled Sky to ensure the best quality viewing experience, even during high online traffic peaks such as major sporting events.
As more consumers watch media on mobile devices and interact with content on the move, Sky selected Akamai to enable its Sky Go service for mobile video consumption. Thanks to Akamai's fast upload solution, it has been able to provide content for mobile viewing from smartphones, tablets and laptops with100 percent availability and at unprecedented quality.
"Our ultimate goal is to offer live and on demand content via the Web with the same or higher quality than that available via satellite or Digital Terrestrial Transmission, regardless the number of simultaneous connections. With Akamai, we feel confident in achieving that goal," concluded Roggio.
About Sky Italia
Sky Italia is the Italian pay TV fully owned by 21st Century Fox. Since it started in 2003, its customer base has rapidly grown up to 4.730.000 subscriptions recorded in June 2014. Sky is presently offering more than 170 dedicated theme and pay per view channels, with a rich offering including feature films, sport, news, entertainment and children's programmes. Sky is the first Italian television to broadcast a HD and live 3D content, offering a package of more than 60 High Definition channels and a channel fully dedicated to 3D programmes. Moreover, thanks to My Sky HD it is possible to record one's own favourite programmes and access the Sky On Demand service, while Sky Go offers mobile viewers a wide range of channels and on demand content. Further information available on: www.sky.it.
Akamai® is the leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimizing and securing online content and business applications. At the core of the Company’s solutions is the Akamai Intelligent Platform™ providing extensive reach, coupled with unmatched reliability, security, visibility and expertise. Akamai removes the complexities of connecting the increasingly mobile world, supporting 24/7 consumer demand, and enabling enterprises to securely leverage the cloud. To learn more about how Akamai is accelerating the pace of innovation in a hyperconnected world, please visit www.akamai.com or blogs.akamai.com, and follow @Akamai on Twitter.