Google Acquires Anvato, A Video Software Startup - InformationWeek

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Google Acquires Anvato, A Video Software Startup

Google is looking to bolster its footing in the OTT video market with the purchase of Silicon Valley startup Anvato. The deal will help Google compete with similar services from Microsoft's Azure cloud.

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Google is acquiring Anvato, a Mountain View-based startup that provides a software platform that automates the encoding, editing, publishing, and secure distribution of video content across multiple platforms.

The move could help Google bolster its foothold in the cloud-based video delivery market. Anvato's Media Content Platform (MCP) is a software-based video supply chain platform that guarantees video playback and monetization from signal to screen.

The adoption of over-the-top (OTT) technologies has emerged as a critical platform for delivering rich audio, video, and other media through the internet. Belwadi Srikanth, senior product manager for Google Cloud Platform, noted the acquisition would complement Google's efforts to enable scalable media processing and workflows in the cloud.

"With OTT adoption rapidly accelerating, the Cloud Platform and Anvato teams will work together to deliver cloud solutions that help businesses in the media and entertainment industry scale their video infrastructure efforts and deliver high-quality, live video and on-demand content to consumers on any device -- be it their smartphone, tablet or connected television," Srikanth wrote in a July 7 blog post.

(Image: Google)

(Image: Google)

Anvato offers a variety of services, including technology for immersive 360-degree video offerings with no requirement for separate workflows to process content.

For example, the company's 360 Degree Video outputs are playable using Anvato's Player SDK. They are processed and played without buffering. Content-aware encoding allows the playback component to optimize the experience in all fields of vision by leveraging massively parallel video processing, so enabling rapid delivery of files that support 360-degree video.

Right now, the Google Cloud Platform offers users content ingestion and creation, graphics rendering, storage and archival, and video transcoding and distribution for live streaming.

One service, ZYNC Render, which Google and Autodesk joined forces recently to create, is designed for small to medium-size studios. It allows artists to use the tools and renderers with integrated licensing, billing, and full visibility into the rendering pipeline.

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"The Google Cloud Platform team is committed to helping our customers in the media and entertainment industry manage their infrastructure more efficiently, provision servers and networks at rapid scale and remove unnecessary overhead," Srikanth wrote. "We're thrilled to have the Anvato team join us in our mission."

The acquisition will also help Google compete better with Microsoft and its Azure Media Services platform, which provides a variety of services, including on-demand and live video streaming with integrated Content Delivery Network (CDN) capabilities.

Google first announced the alpha testing of its own CDN for the company's cloud computing platform in December.

Google's CDN offering uses "globally distributed edge caches-to-cache HTTP(S) Load Balanced content," which is geographically located as close to the end-user as possible.

What this means is that by keeping the caches at the local end of the network, Google's CDN can provide faster delivery of the content, since the data is that much closer to the end-user. At the same time, it reduces the load on cloud servers, which also increases delivery.

Nathan Eddy is a freelance writer for InformationWeek. He has written for Popular Mechanics, Sales & Marketing Management Magazine, FierceMarkets, and CRN, among others. In 2012 he made his first documentary film, The Absent Column. He currently lives in Berlin. View Full Bio

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