Listen to this story
Cloud-native OTT platforms were born out of the explosion in the streaming audience. More viewers brought along more security threats, more complex workflows and bigger infrastructures. A cloud-based infrastructure solved a bunch of these problems – scalability became easier and the quality of experience improved by a wide margin.
Manik Bambha, the co-founder and CEO of ViewLift, was early to spot this shift having founded the cloud-based streaming platform in 2008. “We realised we can help sports, media companies and broadcasters quickly launch their own OTT services without draining their time and resources. These companies can start making money from their digital content in a matter of weeks, rather than months or years of joining the platform,” he explained.
Emergence of OTT cloud-native platforms
The benefits from this push in cloud infrastructure were far too many. “Cloud native tech is a revolution. In the past, brands had to order servers and wait for them to be ready before they could launch their digital platforms. This process could take between 6-12 months, which was a significant barrier of entry for many businesses. With cloud native technology, brands can launch their platforms in a matter of weeks. Cloud native platforms are built to scale quickly and efficiently, which means that they can handle millions of users in a matter of days,” he stated.
Subscribe to our Newsletter
Join our editors every weekday evening as they steer you through the most significant news of the day, introduce you to fresh perspectives, and provide unexpected moments of joy
During the development process, a cloud native offers greater flexibility and agility. This means developers can easily make changes to the platform without disrupting user experience. It also means brands can respond to changing market conditions and customer needs quicker than ever before. More for consumers, more for businesses.
Bambha said that this shift in content was a natural one and has been in the making for a long time. “Over the past decade, we have seen a massive shift in the media industry towards over-the-top (OTT) services. Ten years ago, OTT was largely seen as a pilot or test project, but today it is a key growth strategy for many companies.
“The rise of OTT was driven by a number of factors, including increased internet speeds, the proliferation of smart devices and changing consumer habits. While traditional TV is still the main revenue source for many big brands, it is shrinking and will possibly vanish within the next 10-15 years. Consumers are increasingly turning to OTT services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video for their entertainment needs. OTT is the future of media, and companies that do not adapt to this new reality risk being left behind,” he stated.
Impact of the competitive cloud businesses on OTT
Since these platforms are married to cloud businesses, it goes without saying that the furiously competitive segment will affect them. “We have stayed ahead in predicting the cloud wars and we have made our OTT solutions cloud-agnostic and multi-cloud capable. Currently, we support AWS and Google Cloud,” Bambha said.
Bambha discusses how the increasingly competitive cloud computing market is also opening up new opportunities for OTT content owners. “There’s a wider range of cloud providers to choose from, which can help them optimise their costs and improve performance. Additionally, competition drives innovation, which is a win-win for both consumers and the industry,” he added.
What gives ViewLift the edge?
“One of the most significant applications of AI/ML is our content-recommendation engine. By analysing user behaviour and preferences, ViewLift can provide personalised content recommendations that are more likely to resonate with each individual user. This helps to keep users engaged and coming back for more,” he said. Predictive analytics is another area where AI/ML is being used. ViewLift is also using AI/ML to personalise the user interface providing a more intuitive and engaging experience.
Background and career
Bambha’s transition to the media and entertainment industry wasn’t entirely unforeseen. Formerly a director of engineering at MySpace, and following that up with a stint as the VP of engineering at Shindig, Bambha has a deep understanding of social media, content and what goes behind it. “As I continued to solve these technical problems, I began to see how they intersected with business problems, particularly in the domain of digital and OTT media,” he signed off.