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The Explosion of Companies Producing Video and the Transition to 4K Driving a Refresh of the Entire Video Technology Stack

After two full days spent in the NAB exhibit halls talking with storage vendors, a couple dynamics driving product strategies were clearly in play. The first dynamic is the dramatic increase in the number of companies producing, storing and archiving video. The other dynamic in evidence is how the transition away from analog and standard definition to digital high definition—specifically 4K—video has driven a refresh of the entire video technology stack.
One implication of the increasing number of companies doing video is that these same companies now have a desire—and in some cases a regulatory requirement—to capture, store and archive that video. Many of those organizations don’t even have an IT staff, much less an IT staff that understands the requirements around video. Qualstar is addressing that challenge by bringing together the entire hardware and software stack for storing and archiving video in a pre-integrated solution called the mediaExeQ. The new Qualstar Q24 entry level tape library is part of this package. This new tape library brings Qualstar tape library products down into the small to medium sized business space.
The second dynamic on display among storage vendors at NAB is the impact of 4K video. 4K requires more of everything, especially storage space and bandwidth. For businesses that manage a large library of video, 4Kmay also push the scalability limits of their existing storage systems.
Evidence of vendors responding to this need for more storage capacity include Dot Hill’s AssuredSAN Ultra48, that can hold 48 SSDs for HDDs to deliver nearly 58 TB of raw storage capacity in a 2U rack-mount SAN. Meanwhile, Infortrend is addressing the need for greater storage density through support for HGST 6TB hard drives and new products with higher storage densities such as the EonStor DS 3024B.
I stopped by the Scality booth to learn more about their software-defined-storage system. They are intent on addressing the issue of delivering performance at scale. Ronald Weissman, Scality’s CMO, commented that “Performance at scale is hard.” He acknowledged that several companies are seeking to address this issue. He also commented that, “To be successful you must stand out and fit in.” The fit in part of that statement refers to fitting into existing environments without breaking those environments. Evidence of that philosophy is Scality’s native NFS/CIFS support and API support for OpenStack Cinder and Hadoop CDMI.
There are many—actually an overwhelming number–of other companies participating in the replacement of the replacement of the video technology stack, but these are a few of the companies and products I ran into that give evidence that just such a replacement is in full swing.

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