BroadcastPro Middle East hosted a roundtable on August 13, 2015 at Conrad Dubai to discuss the various challenges of deploying cloud services in the Middle East. Sponsored by Imagine Communications, the discussion was attended by technology heads of the regions leading broadcast entities. The discussion centred on the deployment of cloud from a technical as well as commercial […]
BroadcastPro Middle East hosted a roundtable on August 13, 2015 at Conrad Dubai to discuss the various challenges of deploying cloud services in the Middle East. Sponsored by Imagine Communications, the discussion was attended by technology heads of the regions leading broadcast entities. The discussion centred on the deployment of cloud from a technical as well as commercial point of view, and the many infrastructural and legal challenges that have hindered its effective deployment within the region.
Steve Smith, CTO – Cloud at Imagine Communications, moderated the discussion along with Anas Abu Hantash, Business Manager, Solutions Architect at Imagine Communications and BroadcastPro Editor Vijaya Cherian.
Mohamed Abuagla, CTO, Al Jazeera; Dominic Baillie, CTO, Sky News Arabia; Haitham Zaidan, Head of Engineering, Al Rayyan Satellite Channel; Saleh Lootah, Head of TV and Radio Engineering, DMI; Afzal Lakdawala, Head of Planning and Projects, DMI; Omar Alzoubi, Systems Engineering Head, DMI; Mahesh Jaishanker, VP of Datamena and Broadcast, du; Laurent Tescari, ?Director Product Development at e-vision at Etisalat UAE; Mohamad Fares, Head of Broadcast Technology, Qatar TV; Nick Barratt, Senior Broadcast Manager at MBC Group; Paul Green, Senior Digital Technology Manager, OSN; Peter Van Dam, Acting Director of Broadcast Technology, Abu Dhabi Media and Yves Durieux, EMEA M&E Domain Lead from HP participated in the discussion.
The talking points of the discussion included the perception of cloud globally and in the Middle East, the pros and cons of operating in a cloud environment, the biggest concern in the region – content security and how the regions broadcast industry could potentially move forward on a subject that is improving efficiencies globally. The closed-door discussion enabled the tech heads to voice their opinions freely and put forth recommendations that would enable easier and more cost-effective adoption.
Regional broadcasters put forth their main concerns with regards to the cloud and discussed the biggest deterrents to deploying the technology. While some participants mentioned a reluctance to change as a big deterrent, others blamed it on the cost factor. In the present scenario, cloud doesnt offer a cost-effective solution, which is the key reason for big broadcasters reservations to cloud adoption. The absence of reliable and affordable public cloud service in the region was also named as one of the key reasons why broadcasters were not warming up to the cloud.
A very interesting point that emerged during the discussion was a suggestion from Al Jazeeras Abuagla to create a cloud playground where broadcasters could get a feel for the services and its many advantages without investing heavily into it. The team called on Du Datamena to offer a hosting platform to broadcasters to understand and use the cloud. All participants agreed with the idea and suggested that Imagine Communications and other vendors form a consortium to deploy services from the community cloud. Datamenas Mahesh Jaishanker welcomed the idea and promised to offer the necessary support to take it forward.
The discussions around the cloud will be covered extensively in the IBC issue of BroadcastPro Middle East.