Zixi Executive Chairman and CEO Gordon Brooks speaks with Streaming Media Magazine and reveals why Zixi is an essential tool for the streaming toolbox of the future
This is an excerpt from the article “The Streaming Toolbox: Zixi, Cleeng, and Penthera” published on May 29th on streamingmedia.com, written by Nadine Krefetz. For the full article, please click here.
In the past 14 years, Zixi has moved a lot of live and live-linear broadcast content seamlessly from point A to point B. Zixi’s ZEN Master is a single unified intelligence center for content transport to ensure device or channel uptime and signal quality, providing in-stream analysis to confirm that the transmission is working as it should. That analysis looks at network usage, errors in bitrate, content quality, CPU and GPU usage, and detection of SCTE-35 or HTTP Live Streaming markers. It replaces hardware and software probes for automation, control, and evaluation of digital media. “This takes 10 or 12 different software solutions and puts it into a single environment,” says Gordon Brooks, executive chairman and CEO of Zixi.
Zixi ZEN Master
Controlling Media Flow
“If you have a lot of content that you’re moving around the world to a lot of different distribution points, you need something to manage that scale,” says Brooks. Content can be transcoded or passed through. Before ZEN Master, multiple systems were needed to gain this insight. “Unlike traditional monitoring systems, we monitor each segment in the end-to-end workflow across the supply chain—distribution, content owner, content providers, hosting cloud, and software manufacturer,” says Brooks.
From the time content is captured to when it’s sent to a CDN, Zixi is involved with delivering over varying networks across satellite, fiber, open internet, and/or cellular transport. It runs on-prem and on all major cloud providers, with the benefit of being able to manage and administer multicloud or multi-CDN delivery.
ZEN Master can be used for provisioning, deployment, orchestration, monitoring, and root-cause analysis. While the company is known for its Zixi protocol, which can withstand more than 40% packet loss without image degradation, ZEN Master really acts as a control center. “You can automate everything—it has scheduling built into it and full reporting history,” says Brooks.
“We have about 500 customers. We’re in over a hundred countries, with about 80,000 individual deployments around the world,” states Brooks. “In the internet world, we have about 95% market share. Our protocol runs across all IP networks.” Zixi also integrates 14 other protocols.
“The video doesn’t actually run through [ZEN Master], but all the telemetry and access to all the edge devices can be done from the single unified platform,” says Brooks. More than 170 technology partners integrate ZEN Master. “If you’re doing satellite or fiber, odds are very, very high that the device you’re using already has Zixi in it, and you can turn it on and use Zixi that day,” according to Brooks.
The platform features six nines reliability, hitless failover, a packet identifier, normalization, protocol switching, content quality analytics, network analytics, and transport TR-101 analytics. Feeds are managed via an application programming interface (API) that Zixi configures for customers, with a series of dashboards to report on the measurements that experienced network operations staffers need.
ZEN Master is free, and billing is based on volume. Customers can pay as they go or sign multiyear contracts. Zixi does not publish prices.