Cisco Canada Blog

How Cisco is helping shape the future of TV in Canada

January 21, 2013

Every year the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is buzzing with innovative new technology that not only gives us a peek into what tomorrow holds, but what is possible today. So it’s fitting that Cisco choose CES to unveil Videoscape Unity, our new and expanded video services delivery platform. Videoscape is all about the changing landscape of television, and giving service providers the tools they need to deliver big experiences to users. Videoscape Unity enables the truly connected user to watch their favourite programs on multiple devices and bring these shows with them wherever they go.

“But Mark,” you ask. “I can already watch TV on demand with my current service provider, isn’t this old news?”

Good question! While it’s true that experiences like that are already available, some even powered by Cisco’s Videoscape technology, what sets Videoscape Unity apart from the pack is, for the first time, delivery of an agile, open software platform that simply goes beyond current “TV Everywhere” experiences. Videoscape Unity puts next generation experiences as a central focus by giving service providers the scalability and speed they need to deliver multi-screen video experiences. Using Videoscape, service providers can drive their unique brand visions and services.

And how does this affect you, the TV viewer? You won’t necessarily see all the advances of Videoscape Unity, but you will experience them. Unity is all about synced content across multiple devices, the ability to leverage that second screen and stream DVR content from the cloud – not from a box.

The speed of Videoscape’s evolution is a testament to how fast the television and video landscape is changing for service providers. Cisco announced Videoscape at CES 2011, and in just two short years we have evolved the platform to where it is today.

Videoscape Unity, in part, is the result of Cisco’s acquisition of NDS in July 2012. New to the platform is the inclusion of industry leading NDS Fusion clients used to bring advanced experience and interactions to set tops and connected devices. Unity also integrates NDS’ Security Suite to offer multi-platform security critical to the health of the PayTV industry.

With Videoscape Unity it’s all about connecting experiences, your way. Your television experience doesn’t have to stop when you get a phone call or need to step out, it can be personalized and synced, even picked up someplace else, across multiple devices and screens. You can restart shows, catch-up on past programs and DVR playback from anywhere – Unity automatically scales the video to your current device.

Unity also helps solve that age-old problem: “There’s nothing on TV!” With Unity, service providers can give users personalized programming recommendations using analytics, profiles, and even social connections.

And if you’ve ever had the dilemma of going to the movies with friends, or just spending a quiet night in front of the TV, Unity is helping bridge that gap too. Using social networks, operators can bring users together with viewing parties, real-time instant messaging and video calling – on the same screen as the video content.

With connected viewing like this, the real question becomes – how will we ever muster the strength to leave our couch?

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