iN Demand and Pathfire, have blended their technologies and will transmit digitally compressed content to cable VOD file servers. The process will use iN Demand's existing network and satellite capacity and uplink facilities combined with Pathfire's pitch and catch server hardware and multicast software.
"This deal will facilitate the broad deployment of video-on-demand because it will now become cost-effective and manageable to deliver programming to cable headends in an efficient manner," Steve Sklar, senior vice president and general manager of Pathfire's Cable Broadband Group tells CED. "Today, this programming is delivered by tape or FedEx. We deliver it digitally. Our service will enable the industry to grow video-on-demand, giving consumers the ability to watch what they want when they want it. This is a killer app for the cable operators, and our system will help programmers and cable operators to bring it to their customers," he says.
According to the companies, by integrating their technologies and systems, iN Demand and Pathfire will reduce the time required for the delivery of digital programming content. And the alliance will enable the companies to help jump-start the emerging cable TV VOD market.
The expansion into VOD is part of iN Demand's strategy is designed to both enhance cable's value and fortify its competitive position against DBS, something cable providers will welcome.
"This is a huge deal that establishes the foundation for cable's VOD business and that reinforces cable's value in an extremely competitive marketplace," said Rob Jacobson, executive vice president of iN DEMAND. "In addition to delivering the traditional types of pay-per-view programming on VOD, such as commercial-free movies, basic network series and SVOD, we can also develop new forms of digital content and interactive programming that will help solidify cable's role as the preferred choice for digital service."