PBS

Powering cross-country video distribution to online streaming platforms

Fast, reliable transfers make large video files available to broadcasters' growing online audience

 

Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) is a mission-driven public service media enterprise and leading provider of television programming encompassing the arts, education, history, and culture such as the iconic children’s television show Sesame Street as well as other successful shows including Downton Abbey and Frontline. Reaching an audience of nearly 120 million viewers per month through television programming alone, PBS has expanded its reach to include video streaming services for desktops, tablets, smart phones and other streaming devices.

As its audiences moved online, PBS followed. In January 2013, Americans watched 229 million videos across all of PBS’ web and mobile platforms. PBS content is also consumed through a growing number of providers such as Netflix, LodgeNet, Hulu, Amazon Instant Video and Comcast Video On Demand. To distribute its content, PBS transcodes its videos into a variety of formats and delivers them via the Internet to partners around the Country.

PBS uses Aspera to transfer content quickly and reliably to leading video hosting platforms where consumers can conveniently access shows from a wide variety of devices. After receiving content from producers, PBS’s Media Operations Center performs quality control checks, initiates transcode jobs in all the target formats needed for streaming, and then drops the newly created video files into hot folders where Aspera Enterprise Server automatically retrieves and delivers them at high-speed to video streaming partners. Further simplifying the process, most of the video platforms PBS works with already use Aspera for other transfers, so they simply provide PBS with the login credentials and point them to a directory where PBS can upload the video files.

Aspera’s patented fasp transfer technology dynamically adapts its transmission rate to fully utilize available bandwidth while remaining fair to other network traffic, an important feature for the Media Operation Center as they share bandwidth with other teams in the building. If a session fails, Aspera transfers automatically retry and restart from the drop-off point.

“With Aspera, I don’t need to worry because it does the job we need it to do – which is predictable delivery times and excellent reliability regardless of the vagaries of the internet,” said Steve Wynn, Director of Engineering and Maintenance at the PBS Media Operation Center

 

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"With Aspera, I don’t need to worry because it does the job we need it to do – which is predictable delivery times and excellent reliability regardless of the vagaries of the internet."Steve Wynn, Director of Engineering and Maintenance