About the podcast SMAF-NewsBot
Latest bot-read news headlined about the streaming and online video and audio delivery industry.
End of the satellite dish? Sky to launch its own smart TV
Sky is to launch its own range of smart TVs, removing the need for customers to use a satellite dish or set-top box, as the pay-TV company shifts its offering to remain competitive in the streaming era. The broadband-powered TV set, called Sky Glass, will be launched in the UK on 18 October and in . Sky is to launch its own range of smart TVs, removing the need for customers to use a satellite dish or set-top box, as the pay-TV company shifts its offering to remain competitive in the streaming era. The broadband-powered TV set, called Sky Glass, will be launched in the UK on 18 October and in Sky’s other European markets next year. The new service will aggregate content from streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+, as well as Sky channels and content from other broadcasters. Dana Strong, the group chief executive at Sky, said: “The streaming revolution and the explosion of content has brought a whole new set of challenges. “Sky Glass is the streaming TV with Sky inside. Most people use multiple apps to find the content they want. But the apps are not connected, and the experiences are fragmented. So we spend more time searching for content than enjoying it.” The TV aims to simplify the largest screen in the house by doing away with the need for multiple boxes, separate speakers and a mess of cables, while modernising it with smartphone-like features. It detects your presence to wake when you walk in the room and responds to voice commands with “Hello, Sky”. It will learn from your family’s watching habits and show you the right content at the right time to reduce the number of clicks you have to make, even if it is within apps such as Netflix or from another device such as an Xbox. Software updates will give it new features, while a Zoom-capable video chat camera add-on coming in spring 2022. It boasts an integrated Dolby Atmos surround sound system with six speakers, and promises to automatically adapt to the content being broadcast and ambient light in the room to offer the optimum speech and picture quality. The remote has also been simplified. Sky said Glass would cut electricity consumption by about 50% by doing away with multiple boxes, while it claims its recyclable, plastic-free packaging and off-setting make it be the first carbon-neutral TV. The launch of the TV service signals Sky’s attempt to get ahead of the “cord-cutting” phenomenon in which tens of millions of US customers ditched their traditional pay-TV bundles of channels in favour of cheaper offerings from streaming services such as Netflix. Sky, which was acquired by the US pay-TV giant Comcast three years ago for £30bn, said the new service would be competitively priced, with consumers able to pay for the TV as part of a monthly subscription. “You can now buy your TV just like you buy your mobile phone, with a range of flexible monthly payment options,” she said. Sign up to the daily Business Today email or follow Guardian Business on Twitter at @BusinessDesk Monthly subscription packages will start at £13 for the TV with the cheapest device and TV content package priced at £39 a month. When the company launched its premium Sky Q box in 2017, it said it was working on an offering to make its full TV service available via a broadband connection, which would enable it to target 6m homes across Europe who do not have a satellite dish. In the UK, Sky offers the Now TV streaming platform, which allows consumers to buy monthly passes for access to entertainment and sports content, but it does not provide access to all Sky’s services. The cost of TV and streaming services Netflix: From £5.99 a month to £13.99 (excluding broadband) Amazon Prime Video: £79 annually, £6.58 a month Disney+: £7.99 a month ITV’s Britbox: £5.99 a month Discovery+: £4.99 a month Sky’s Now TV: From £9.99 a month to £33.99 depending on package BT TV: From £12 to £40 a month Virgin Media TV: From £5 to £41 a month Source: Ampere Analysis
500MW hyperscale campus being planned in Temple, Texas
A new data center firm is planning to develop a large hyperscale campus in the City of Temple, Texas. The Temple Economic Development Corporation . Completing the CAPTCHA proves you are a human and gives you temporary access to the web property. What can I do to prevent this in the future? If you are on a personal connection, like at home, you can run an anti-virus scan on your device to make sure it is not infected with malware. If you are at an office or shared network, you can ask the network administrator to run a scan across the network looking for misconfigured or infected devices. Another way to prevent getting this page in the future is to use Privacy Pass. You may need to download version 2.0 now from the Chrome Web Store.
More details about the October 4 outage
Now that our platforms are up and running as usual after yesterday’s outage, I thought it would be worth sharing a little more detail on what . Now that our platforms are up and running as usual after yesterday’s outage, I thought it would be worth sharing a little more detail on what happened and why — and most importantly, how we’re learning from it. This outage was triggered by the system that manages our global backbone network capacity. The backbone is the network Facebook has built to connect all our computing facilities together, which consists of tens of thousands of miles of fiber-optic cables crossing the globe and linking all our data centers. Those data centers come in different forms. Some are massive buildings that house millions of machines that store data and run the heavy computational loads that keep our platforms running, and others are smaller facilities that connect our backbone network to the broader internet and the people using our platforms. When you open one of our apps and load up your feed or messages, the app’s request for data travels from your device to the nearest facility, which then communicates directly over our backbone network to a larger data center. That’s where the information needed by your app gets retrieved and processed, and sent back over the network to your phone. The data traffic between all these computing facilities is managed by routers, which figure out where to send all the incoming and outgoing data. And in the extensive day-to-day work of maintaining this infrastructure, our engineers often need to take part of the backbone offline for maintenance — perhaps repairing a fiber line, adding more capacity, or updating the software on the router itself. This was the source of yesterday’s outage. During one of these routine maintenance jobs, a command was issued with the intention to assess the availability of global backbone capacity, which unintentionally took down all the connections in our backbone network, effectively disconnecting Facebook data centers globally. Our systems are designed to audit commands like these to prevent mistakes like this, but a bug in that audit tool prevented it from properly stopping the command. This change caused a complete disconnection of our server connections between our data centers and the internet. And that total loss of connection caused a second issue that made things worse. One of the jobs performed by our smaller facilities is to respond to DNS queries. DNS is the address book of the internet, enabling the simple web names we type into browsers to be translated into specific server IP addresses. Those translation queries are answered by our authoritative name servers that occupy well known IP addresses themselves, which in turn are advertised to the rest of the internet via another protocol called the border gateway protocol (BGP). To ensure reliable operation, our DNS servers disable those BGP advertisements if they themselves can not speak to our data centers, since this is an indication of an unhealthy network connection. In the recent outage the entire backbone was removed from operation, making these locations declare themselves unhealthy and withdraw those BGP advertisements. The end result was that our DNS servers became unreachable even though they were still operational. This made it impossible for the rest of the internet to find our servers. All of this happened very fast. And as our engineers worked to figure out what was happening and why, they faced two large obstacles: first, it was not possible to access our data centers through our normal means because their networks were down, and second, the total loss of DNS broke many of the internal tools we’d normally use to investigate and resolve outages like this. Our primary and out-of-band network access was down, so we sent engineers onsite to the data centers to have them debug the issue and restart the systems. But this took time, because these facilities are designed ...
Infographic: A Minute on the Internet in 2021
The digital world is a universe in its own right and a very fast moving one at that. Myriads of downloads and uploads, posts and searches, messages . The digital world is a universe in its own right and a very fast moving one at that. Myriads of downloads and uploads, posts and searches, messages sent and received, listens and streams happen every minute on the world wide web. According to data compiled by Lori Lewis and published on the site AllAccess, 60 seconds on the web in 2021 consist of more than 500 hours of content uploaded on YouTube, 695,000 stories shared on Instagram and nearly 70 million messages sent via WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. That same internet minute also contains more than two million swipes on Tinder as well as an incredible 1.6 million U.S. dollars spent online.
What Happened to Facebook, Instagram, & WhatsApp?
Facebook and its sister properties Instagram and WhatsApp are suffering from ongoing, global outages. We don’t yet know why this happened, but the how . Facebook and its sister properties Instagram and WhatsApp are suffering from ongoing, global outages. We don’t yet know why this happened, but the how is clear: Earlier this morning, something inside Facebook caused the company to revoke key digital records that tell computers and other Internet-enabled devices how to find these destinations online. Doug Madory is director of internet analysis at Kentik, a San Francisco-based network monitoring company. Madory said at approximately 11:39 a.m. ET today (15:39 UTC), someone at Facebook caused an update to be made to the company’s Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) records. BGP is a mechanism by which Internet service providers of the world share information about which providers are responsible for routing Internet traffic to which specific groups of Internet addresses. In simpler terms, sometime this morning Facebook took away the map telling the world’s computers how to find its various online properties. As a result, when one types Facebook.com into a web browser, the browser has no idea where to find Facebook.com, and so returns an error page. In addition to stranding billions of users, the Facebook outage also has stranded its employees from communicating with one another using their internal Facebook tools. That’s because Facebook’s email and tools are all managed in house and via the same domains that are now stranded. “Not only are Facebook’s services and apps down for the public, its internal tools and communications platforms, including Workplace, are out as well,” New York Times tech reporter Ryan Mac tweeted. “No one can do any work. Several people I’ve talked to said this is the equivalent of a ‘snow day’ at the company.” The outages come just hours after CBS’s 60 Minutes aired a much-anticipated interview with Frances Haugen, the Facebook whistleblower who recently leaked a number of internal Facebook investigations showing the company knew its products were causing mass harm, and that it prioritized profits over taking bolder steps to curtail abuse on its platform — including disinformation and hate speech. We don’t know how or why the outages persist at Facebook and its other properties, but the changes had to have come from inside the company, as Facebook manages those records internally. Whether the changes were made maliciously or by accident is anyone’s guess at this point. Madory said it could be that someone at Facebook just screwed up. “In the past year or so, we’ve seen a lot of these big outages where they had some sort of update to their global network configuration that went awry,” Madory said. “We obviously can’t rule out someone hacking them, but they also could have done this to themselves.” Update, 4:37 p.m. ET: Sheera Frenkel with The New York Times tweeted that Facebook employees told her they were having trouble accessing Facebook buildings because their employee badges no longer worked. That could be one reason this outage has persisted so long: Facebook engineers may be having trouble physically accessing the computer servers needed to upload new BGP records to the global Internet. Update, 6:16 p.m. ET: A trusted source who spoke with a person on the recovery effort at Facebook was told the outage was caused by a routine BGP update gone wrong. The source explained that the errant update blocked Facebook employees — the majority of whom are working remotely — from reverting the changes. Meanwhile, those with physical access to Facebook’s buildings couldn’t access Facebook’s internal tools because those were all tied to the company’s stranded domains. Update, 7:46 p.m. ET: Facebook says its domains are slowly coming back online for most users. In a tweet, the company thanked users for their patience, but it still hasn’t offered any explanation for the outage. Update, 8:05 p.m. ET: This fascinating...
Cloud Encoding Pricing Comparison Reveals Dramatic Cost Differences – Are You Overpaying? - Streaming Learning Center
This whitepaper, sponsored by Dolby/Hybrik, tracks cloud encoding pricing for H.264 and HEVC output and reveals dramatic price differences among . This whitepaper, sponsored by Dolby/Hybrik, tracks cloud encoding pricing for H.264 and HEVC output and reveals dramatic price differences among popular services. I’ve just completed a whitepaper sponsored by Dolby/Hybrik to compare pricing for multiples of one hour of H.264 and HEVC encoding using the recommended encoding ladders in the Apple HLS Authoring Specifications. You can download the whitepaper here. A few points about the methodology (covered in detail in the paper). The paper compares costs for the highest-quality output available from each service, usually two-pass encoding (though one service only offers single-pass encoding). You may be able to achieve lower pricing by opting for single-pass, though we didn’t encode files to measure the quality delta. The paper compares the lowest published pricing for all services; as stated in the paper, most larger customers can negotiate much better pricing than shown. The paper compares SaaS pricing; several vendors (AWS Elemental, encoding.com) offer Platform as a Service pricing, while others (Bitmovin, encoding.com) offer reduced-cost plans that enable you to run their software on your own hardware. You probably can achieve much lower pricing from these services by exploring these plans. Here are the results for H.264 encoding. Here are the results for HEVC encoding. As the paper concludes, “for most high-volume streaming producers, encoding is not yet a commodity, as most companies require features, workflows, and outputs that not all vendors support. Still, when multiple vendors check all the required boxes, price and quality become critical differentiators. Remember that you really can’t assess price without considering output quality, so to get to an apples-to-apples pricing comparison, you’ll have to roll up your sleeves and perform test encodes on all services that make your shortlist.” You can download the whitepaper here.
About the podcast SMAF-NewsBot
Latest bot-read news headlined about the streaming and online video and audio delivery industry.